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CORNELL 

UNIVERSITY 

LIBRARY 




BOUGHT WITH THE INCOME 
OF THE SAGE ENDOWMENT 
FUND GIVEN IN 1891 BY 

HENRY WILLIAMS SAGE 



CORNELL UNIVERSITY LIBRARY 



924 092 215 437 




The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

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the United States on the use of the text. 



http://archive.org/details/cu31924092215437 



BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY 
OF NORTH CAROLINA 

'OLD NORTH STATE" EDITION 

LIMITED TO SEVEN HUNDRED 
AND FIFTY REGISTERED AND 
NUMBERED SETS, OF WHICH 
THIS IS SET NUMBER ..^JJsl.. 





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From Colonial Times 
to the Present 




Editor-in-Chief 

Samuel A. Ashe 



VOLUME I 



Charles L. Van Noppen 

PUBLISHER 

Greensboro, N. C. 

M CM V 



/'vL- 




Kemp P. Battle . 
John C. Buxton 
Theo. F. Davidson 
Junius Davis 
rufus a. doughton 
Thomas J. Jarvis 
James Y. Joyner . 
Charles D. McIver 
William L. Poteat 
James H. Southgate 
Charles W. Tillett 



Chapel Hill 

Winston-Salem 

. Asheville 

Wilmington 

Sparta 

Greenville 

Raleigh 

Greensboro 

Wake Forest 

Durham 

. Charlotte 




The Publisher desires to say that it has 
been his design, in co-operation with the 
eminent gentlemen associated in the prep- 
aration of this work, to present to posterity 
some account of those useful citizens who 
have been connected with the events and 
historical episodes exerting an influence on 
the life of the people and on the develop- 
ment of the institutions and industries of 
the State of North Carolina. 

If this design has been executed as de- 
sired, the work speaks best for itself and 
needs no further preface. 




Advisory Board vii 

Preface ix 

Contents . xi 

Portraits .... xv 

Contributors xviii 

The Story of the People i 

Secession and Reconstruction 22 

Alexander, Abraham 37 

Alexander, Nathaniel 39 

Alexander, John McKnitt 42 

Andrews, Alexander Boyd 45 

Archdale, John 60 

Ashe, Samuel A'Court 66 

Aycock, Charles B 76 

Battle, Cullen Andrews 83 

Barringer, John Paul 89 

Barringer, General Paul . 95 

Barringer, Daniel Moreau 100 

Barringer, William no 

Barringer, Rufus • 116 

Barringer, Victor Clay 125 

Barringer, John Alston 130 

Barringer, Paul Brandon . . .... -135 



xii CONTENTS 


Barringer, Daniel Moreau, Jr. 145 


Benbow, De Witt Clinton 




148 


Benbury, Thomas .... 






• 154 


Blakeley, Johnston .... 






• 157 


Blount, Reading .... 






. 161 


Blount, William Augustus 






164 


Borden, Edwin Brownrigg . 






167 


Bridgers, Robert Rufus . 






171 


Brown, Bedford 




181 


Brown, Joseph Gill . 




186 


Brevard, Ephraim ... 




194 


Buncombe, Edward ... 




197 


Burns, Otway . 




200 


Burrington, George . . ... 




203 


Caldwell, David ... 






206 


Caldwell, Joseph Pearson . 






213 


Cooper, David Young . . 






218 


Cox, William Ruffin 






226 


CoxE, Franklin . 






237 


Craige, Burton 






244 


Craige, Kerr ... . . 




250 


Drummond, William 




254 


DuRANT, George . 




257 


Eden, Charles 




262 


Edwards, Weldon N. . . . 




26s 


Everard, Richard . 




270 


Fanning, Edmund ... 


272 


Fuller, Thomas C. . . . .... 


277 


Furches, David Moffatt 


287 


Gale, Christopher ... 


292 


Harvey, John, Sr. . . 






294 



CONTENTS xiii 



Henderson, Richard 297 

Henderson, John Steele 300 

Hoke, Robert Frederick 309 

HoRNE, Ashley 322 

Hyde, Edward 329 

Jarvis, Thomas Jordan 332 

Johnston, William 341 

KiLGO, John Carlisle 349 

Kingsbury, Theodore Bryant 356 

LiLLiNGTON, Alexander 363 

Means, Paul Barringer 366 

Miller, John Fulenwider 377 

Mitchell, Elisha 3^4 

MuRCHisoN, David Reid 392 

MuRCHisoN, Kenneth McKenzie 398 

Nash, Abner 403 

Nash, Frederick 405 

Pollock, Thomas 41 1 

Pritchard, Jeter Conley 4^3 

Ransom, Matt Whitaker 420 

RoBBiNS, William McKendree 43° 

Scott, Hugh Reid 43^ 

Swain, David Lowry 447 

Taylor, Charles Elisha 45^ 

Tompkins, Daniel A ... 465 

Tryon, William 47^ 

Watts, George Washington .... . . 474 




Ashe, Samuel A'Court Frontispiece 

Andrews, Alexander Boyd facing 45 

Aycock, Charles B. . " 76 

Barringer, General Paul .... . . " 95 

Barringer, Daniel Moreau " 100 

Barringer, William . . " no 

Barringer, Rufus " 116 

Barringer, Victor Clay . " 125 

Barringer, John Alston . " 130 

Barringer, Paul Brandon . " 135 

Barringer, Daniel Moreau, Jr " 145 

Benbow, De Witt Clinton " 148 

Borden, Edwin Brownrigg " 167 

Bridgers, Robert Rufus " 171 

Brown, Joseph Gill " 186 

Caldwell, Joseph Pearson " 213 

Cooper, David Young . . " 218 

Cox, William Ruffin " 226 

Coxe, Franklin . . " 237 

Craige, Burton " 244 

Craige, Kerr " 250 

Fuller, Thomas C . " 277 

Furches, David Moffatt " 287 



XVI 



PORTRAITS 



Henderson, John Steele facing 300 

Hoke, Robert Frederick " 309 

Horne, Ashley " 322 

Jarvis, Thomas Jordan " 332 

Johnston, William " 341 

KiLGO, John Carlisle " 349 

Means, Paul Barringer " 365 

Miller, John Fulenwider " 377 

MuRCHisoN, David Reid " 392 

MuRCHisoN, Kenneth McKenzie " 398 

Pritchard, Jeter Conley . . " 413 

Ransom, Matt Whitaker " 420 

RoBBiNS, William McKendree " 430 

Scott, Hugh Reid " 436 

Swain, David Lowry " 447 

Taylor, Charles Elisiia " 458 

Tompkins, Daniel A " 465 

Watts, George Washington " 474 





Samuel A. Ashe Theodore B. Kingsbury, LL.D. 

Daniel M. Barringer, A.M. Paul B. Means, A.B. 

P. B. Barringer, M.D., LL.D. Franklin B. McDowell, A.B. 

Jacob T. Barron Frank Nash 

John Spencer Bassett, Ph.D. William S. Pearson, A.B. 

Kemp P. Battle, LL.D. Thomas M. Pittman 

Fabius H. Busbee, A.m. Jethro Rumple, D.D. 

Edwin Thomas Cansler Charles M. Stedman, A.M. 

John B. Carlyle, A.M. Hugh R. Scott, A.M. 

Leonidas W. Crawford, D.D. Edward W. Sikes, Ph.D. 

Cyrus P Frazier, A.M. Stephen B. Weeks, Ph.D., LL.D. 
Marshall DeLancey Haywood WooDROw Wilson, Ph.D., LL.D. 

Herman H. Horne, Ph.D. William A. Withers, A.M. 





THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 
By SAMUEL A. ASHE 

N examining the biographies embraced in this 
volume one will observe that, with but few 
exceptions, all the men of mark in North 
Carolina have sprung from ancestors who set- 
tled in the State more than a century ago. 
This circumstance is interesting because it 
emphasizes a notable difference between the conditions that are 
found in North Carolina and those that exist in the other com- 
monwealths of the Union. Although North Carolina has con- 
tributed largely to the stream of pioneer settlers who have so 
energetically subdued the wilderness o'f the West, she herself has 
received no accession of population since the Revolutionary War. 
Thus it happens that her citizenship rests almost exclusively on 
the stock that inhabited her territory in colonial days, and that 
her people, having been developed under her local institutions, 
may now with truth be said to be "racy of the soil." They are 
the product of several generations of North Carolina's bright 
sunshine, of her temperate climate, her salubrious atmosphere, of 
her extensive forests and fertile fields, and of the life of comfort 
and tranquil ease that her inhabitants have so largely enjoyed. 

While it is always of interest to study the beginnings of a 
people, and to trace the rise of their institutions and the founda- 
tion of their characteristics, it is especially so when the develop- 



NORTH CAROLINA 



ment has been a steady progress through natural growth, unaffected 
by extraneous influences. 

Although the first English settlement, made in Queen Elizabeth's 
time, was seated on Roanoke Island, now within the confines of 
North Carolina, as that attempt at colonization ended in disaster, 
it had no influence or effect whatever on the life or history of 
the people who subsequently settled in that vicinity; but the 
story of that first entrance of the English into the wilds of 
America is only as some fable or romantic tradition associated 
with the locality, and investing it with a mournful interest because 
of the mystery attending the unhappy fate of Raleigh's "Lost 
Colony." 

In like manner, the settlement in 1663 at Charlestown, on 
the Cape Fear, by the colony from Massachusetts and the Barba- 
does, which after a few years passed away and disappeared, ex- 
erted no influence whatsoever on the subsequent history of the 
province. As interesting as these incidents may be to persons fond 
of historical research, they are entirely aside from the history of 
the men and women who inhabit North Carolina. 

The first stone in the foundations of the State was laid when, 
about 1658, some few adventurous Virginians passed through the 
wilderness beyond Nansemond, and, having explored the region 
bordering on the great Carolina Sound, purchased lands from the 
Yeopim Indians and began a settlement there. 

The territory south of latitude 36° to the borders of Florida 
had been granted to Sir Robert Heath by Charles I., under 
the name of Carolana, and had thus become detached from 
Virginia, and although Virginia traders by the middle of the 
century were measurably familiar with the Carolina Sound, there 
had been no occasion for any families to locate on its distant shores. 
But about the date mentioned a few planters were led to seek 
new homes in that region, finding inducements in the superior 
advantages of its fertile lands. They brought with them the ideas 
of government and the customs then prevalent in their Virginia 
homes, and for a time their settlement on the sound was known 
merely by the name of "The New Plantations." 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 



In England, Cromwell's commonwealth had replaced the 
kingdom, and Virginia at that time was a representative republic, 
being, indeed, entitled to be particularly known as the "Home of 
the Free." On the Revolution in England, that province, of 
which George Berkeley was the royal governor, adhered to the 
Crown, winning the appellation of the "Old Dominion," until at 
length, in 1652, Parliament despatched a fleet to enforce a 
recognition of its authority. On the arrival of this force a treaty 
was agreed upon between the representatives of Parliament and 
the people of Virginia, by which practical independence was ac- 
corded to the Old Dominion. Manhood suffrage prevailed, and 
the Assembly, freely chosen by the people, elected the governor 
and other officers, so that that province, alone of all the countries 
of the world, had republican institutions resting on the will of 
all the free inhabitants. The people governed themselves and 
conformed their religious and civil polity to their own desires ; and 
the dissenting element predominating in the Assembly, although 
the Church of England was tolerated, the Prayer-book was not 
allowed to be used in religious services, and there was a notable 
lack of ministers in the province. 

Such were the conditions in Virginia when George Durant 
and the pioneer settlers crossed the narrow margin of intervening 
forests and located on the shores of the great Carolina Sound, 
doubtless expecting to be exempt from the burden of paying 
annual rent to the government, as was the requirement in Virginia. 

A few years later, when Cromwell's government was tottering 
to its fall, the Virginia Assembly elected Berkeley to be again 
governor, who, upon the restoration of Charles, hastened to Court, 
and, being reappointed by the king, he received instructions to 
require the inhabitants of the New Plantations to take out grants 
for their lands from him as governor of Virginia. At the same 
time he appears to have set on foot an application to the king 
for the grant of Carolina to himself, his brother and six other 
gentlemen to whom the king owed obligations for their aid in 
his restoration, among them being the Duke of Albemarle, and 
Ashley, Earl of Shaftesbury, a lawyer of large wealth and a zealous 



NORTH CAROLINA 



advocate of liberty. The grant being made, Berkeley was author- 
ized by the other lords proprietors to establish, under certain 
regulations, a government for the Plantations, which they now 
called Albemarle, in honor of the great duke. These regulations, 
as well as the proposals for new settlers in Carolina later promul- 
gated by the proprietors, breathed the spirit of freedom ; for, while 
the right to appoint the governor and to manage their property 
through minor officers was reserved to the proprietors, full control 
in the matter of taxation and in the expenditure of the public fund 
was accorded to an Assembly to be elected by all the inhabitants. 
Under such inducements additional settlers were constantly 
arriving in Albemarle, some of whom were men of substance, 
planters bringing with them slaves and white servants, and men 
of intelligence, education and social standing in their former 
communities. 

Such was the beginning of the people of North Carolina — a 
few adventurous settlers who, indoctrinated in the principles of 
freedom and self-government, and imbued with a spirit of religious 
toleration, originally purchased their lands from the Indians, and 
lived on their plantations in amity with the aborigines of the 
neighboring forests. 

While the colony was still in its infancy, in 1669, a more 
elaborate system of government was prepared for Carolina by 
Shaftesbury and the celebrated philosopher, Locke, which, while it 
provided for a landed aristocracy composed of landgraves and 
caciques, by some other provisions, the result of Shaftesbury's 
experience during Cromwell's iron rule in England, laid still 
deeper the foundations of freedom in the colony. With one or two 
exceptions there were never any landgraves or nobles resident in 
North Carolina, and the aristocratic feature of the Fundamental 
Constitutions played no part in the course of events, while, on the 
other hand, the muniments of freedom embodied in that instrument 
subsequently became of vital interest to the people. 

Being under proprietary rule and not affiliated with the royal 
province of Virginia, and remote from any other settlement, the 
people of Albemarle, left largely to themselves, pursued their way 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 5 

in life with slight regard for laws not of their own making. They 
enjoyed practical independence, and when the occasion justified 
it they deposed their governors and banished them; and, indeed, 
for a number of years the administration was committed to the 
president of the council, a citizen chosen from among the chief 
men of the community. Under such influences freedom was 
fostered and personal independence was strengthened, while the 
vicissitudes of a forest life nurtured robust character and tended 
to vigorous physical development. Sequestered in their homes, 
with neither towns nor marts of commerce, in those early years 
the inhabitants did not enjoy the advantages of higher education 
nor frequent ministrations of religious worship ; but in 1672 Fox 
and Edmondson, those devoted founders of the Society of Friends, 
visited the settlement and instilled the precepts of their religion, 
which soon took deep root and became so widely spread that nearly 
one-half of the entire community embraced that gentle faith. 
There was also a constant influx of new settlers, and the planters 
held frequent communications with Boston and London and with 
their old homes, which had a tendency to sustain their religious 
creeds and to keep alive the embers of learning. 

Some fifty years after the first settlement there were small 
accessions of French, Swiss and Germans, who located on the 
Neuse and Trent ; and almost coincident with their coming, Han- 
cock's Indian war broke out, which, beginning with a fearful 
massacre and continuing in a desultory way for several years, left 
a deep mark on the life of the people. 

At length, in 1729, the king purchased the province of Carolina, 
except one share owned by Earl Granville, whose eighth part 
was laid off for him adjoining Virginia and north of a line running 
from Cape Hatteras through Bath and Smithfield, and extending 
westward along the southern limits of Chatham, Davidson and 
Rowan. Just prior to the purchase settlements were made on 
the Cape Fear, and thither came rich planters from Albemarle and 
South Carolina and Virginia, and men of education and culture 
from abroad, whose families imparted to the colony a social 
character not surpassed along the Atlantic slope. And when, in 



NORTH CAROLINA 



1735, Governor Johnston, a Scotchman, was appointed governor, 
large tracts aggregating more than a milHon acres of land were 
granted to Henry McCulloh and his associates, under whose 
auspices colonists from Ireland and some Swiss and Welsh settled 
on the upper waters of the northeast branch of the Cape Fear; 
while a little later many Highlanders migrated from Scotland and 
took possession of the northwest branch of the river, and a stream 
of population came from South Carolina up the banks of the 
Yadkin and located in that region. At the same time there was a 
constant overflow from Virginia into the counties along the north- 
ern border. 

But as interesting as these movements were, a still more 
important addition to the people of the province began about 1745, 
when two streams of immigrants came pouring in from Pennsyl- 
vania, bringing a very desirable population, and rapidly settling the 
western part of the province. One of these was composed of Irish 
Protestants originally from Ulster, the descendants of Scotch 
Presbyterians who had removed to the north of Ireland many years 
before, and the other of Lutherans and members of the German 
Reformed Church, who, having originally settled in Pennsyl- 
vania, now sought new plantations in the South. The wagon- 
trains of these immigrants coming from the far North passed 
through the valley of Virginia and entered North Carolina 
either on the road leading by the Old Red House, in Per- 
son County, or on the road by Mt. Airy and near Salem, 
and so to Salisbury. Thousands and thousands of these de- 
sirable citizens settled in the Piedmont region, especially on the 
waters of the Catawba, and even extended far into upper South 
Carolina. 

In 1752 another interesting settlement was made at Salem by 
Moravians, who had procured grants for 100,000 acres of land, 
which they located in that vicinity. Thus there were to be found 
in the confines of the province considerable colonies of several 
distinct races, differing in manners and customs, as well as in 
language and modes of life. Indeed, in the Highland settlements 
it was long before the Gaelic tongue was entirely abandoned, and 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 



even in the memory of living persons it has sometimes been used in 
the pulpits of Robeson, Richmond and the adjoining counties. 
Further west, in Stanly and Catawba and through that region, the 
Germans retained for several generations their distinctive charac- 
teristics; and so, likewise, those traits which have ever distin- 
guished the persevering and God-fearing Scotch-Irish have been 
perpetuated among their descendants. All of these immigrants 
were of the Protestant faith, although differing more or less widely 
from the Church of England. They brought their ministers with 
them, and formed communities within themselves, practicing their 
virtues and developing their respective traits under favorable con- 
ditions in their new homes. Happy was it for them that fortune 
directed their footsteps to a country so blessed as the Piedmont 
region of Carolina; the mildness of its winters being in agree- 
able contrast with the rigor of Scotland and Ulster, and the 
brightness of its sunlight promoting an equanimity in unison 
with the temperate climate, and, life being without hardship, 
modifying and softening the rougher and fiercer elements of 
human nature. 

After tlje purchase of the province by the Crown, occasions 
arose when the spirit of freedom that had so long animated the 
people led to struggles for the maintenance of their rights. There 
were controversies between the royal governors and the inhabitants 
concerning the powers of government, the latter claiming rights 
under the old constitutions of the province which the Crown 
officers denied; and these differences in one form or another 
extended throughout the entire period of colonial history. Bur- 
rington, the first royal governor, sought in vain to procure a single 
enactment in conformity with his instructions, and he wrote to his 
superiors in England that "The inhabitants of North Carolina 
had always behaved insolently to their governors. Some they have 
imprisoned, drove others out of the country ; at other times set up 
two or three supported by men under arms, and that they were 
neither to be cajoled nor outwitted." His successor, Johnston, 
having obtained from the king the repeal of "the Biennial Act," 
under which the people in every second September, as a matter of 



8 NORTH CAROLINA 

right, elected their representatives, succeeded, after a bitter 
struggle of thirteen years, in making a compromise with the 
Assembly of some of the matters that were in dispute. 

A notable controversy, however, arose during his administra- 
tion over the right claimed by the old northern counties to have 
five representatives in the Assembly, which led to the withdrawal 
of those counties from any representation in the Assembly and 
their refusal to acknowledge the validity of the laws passed by 
that body, including the tax laws and the acts establishing the 
general courts; so that for a decade there was, in eflfect, an 
unarmed rebellion extending throughout the northern counties, a 
condition which continued until 1754, when the officers of the 
Crown finally determined that the claim of the northern counties 
was well founded and should be respected. 

Those proceedings well exemplify the resolute spirit of the 
people to maintain their just rights; nor were they disinclined 
to take up arms in a proper cause. In 1740 troops were needed 
for an expedition against the Spaniards to the southward, and 
Governor Johnston speedily raised 400 men for that service, and 
could have had a thousand more if the means for their main- 
tenance had sufficed. And when, later, the French and Indians 
invaded the northern colonies, North Carolina at once sent a 
regiment to aid in repelling them, and maintained several battalions 
at the North until the end of the war. 

Hardly had peace been declared with France when, to meet the 
expenditures of the war, the British Ministry proposed to tax the 
colonists — an innovation as unnecessary as it was illegal, for the 
colonies had always by their own action supplied the king accord- 
ing to their ability, whenever it was suggested that he was in 
need of money. This new measure, the Stamp Act, as it imposed 
taxation without representation, was destructive of the rights of 
freemen, and was resisted by all the colonies, but nowhere with 
more resolution than in North Carolina. 

The governor. Colonel Tryon, expecting the arrival of the 
stamps, brought all the gentlemen of the Cape Fear together at 
his residence and urged them to permit the law to be enforced 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 



in part, offering himself to pay for the necessary stamps if they 
would consent. But with firmness they replied that the law should 
not be at all observed within the colony, and he was notified by 
the speaker of the tlouse that it would be resisted unto death. 
Houston, the stamp-master, coming to Wilmington from his home 
in Duplin, was taken to the court-house and made to resign his 
office ; and even the landing of the stamps was prevented. How- 
ever, two vessels coming into the Cape Fear in January, 1766, 
were seized by the Crown officers because their papers were not 
duly stamped, and it was resolved by the people to secure their 
release and to prevent the operation of the act in any particular 
within the province. 

At once the people of Duplin, Onslow, Bladen, Brunswick and 
New Hanover embodied and assembled at Wilmington, where 
they entered into an association to unite and at every hazard of life 
and fortune to maintain their liberties. 

They chose the speaker of the House, John Ashe, and Alex- 
ander Lillington and Thomas Lloyd as their directors, to lead 
and direct them; and Colonel Hugh Waddell was appointed to 
command the forces, there being a thousand men armed and 
organized into companies ; and then the mayor and corporation of 
Wilmington, the three directors and the military marched down 
to old Brunswick, where the vessels were detained by two British 
sloops-of-war, and where the governor and the Crown officers 
resided, and with arms in their hands they forced the surrender 
of the vessels, and they also forcibly took the comptroller, Penning- 
ton, out of the governor's house, and made him swear never to 
execute the Stamp Act. 

While elsewhere a determination to forcibly resist this arbi- 
trary and oppressive measure was generally manifested, nowhere 
else in America was there established a directory, a temporary 
civil government, to guide the movement, nor was there elsewhere 
a military commander appointed to marshal and direct the forces 
in resisting the operation of the act. Had not the British sloops- 
of-war surrendered the merchant ships as demanded, a bloody 
conflict would have ensued, which probably would have precipi- 



10 NORTH CAROLINA 

tated those hostilities that a decade later led to the declaration 
of American independence. 

In considering this episode, we are not more impressed with 
the patriotic ardor of the inhabitants than with the system and 
orderly method pursued, by which the entire proceeding was com- 
mitted to the government of the speaker of the House and the 
two other directors associated with him. 

There had constantly been some friction between the agents 
of Granville, who controlled his possessions, covering the entire 
northern half of the province, and the people inhabiting that 
region, especially in the western or frontier part of it ; and in 
1766 Granville's land ofifice was closed and all sales of land entirely 
ceased, so that settlers could not obtain titles to the premises 
they had taken up. This, together with other grievances of a 
local nature and the unfortunate situation of the people in the 
far interior, having but few facilities for obtaining currency to 
pay taxes, rents or the fees of officers, who, moreover, were 
charged with practicing extortion, led to a condition of unrest 
and dissatisfaction that eventually culminated in a widespread 
movement known as the Regulation. 

It involved many of the inhabitants of the frontier counties, 
from South Carolina to Virginia. To bind the people to joint 
action, association papers were circulated and signed, by which 
they agreed to stand together and procure the redress of griev- 
ances. Originally beginning at Nut Bush, in Granville County, 
the association spread to the south and west until Sandy Creek, 
in Randolph County, became its chief center, while Anson and 
Rowan counties were largely affected. By 1771 the movement 
had spread eastward until apparently even the seacoast counties 
were about to embrace it. A counter-association was then devised 
by the governor, and the Regulators having embodied in large 
numbers, the militia of the province was called out to disperse 
them. The two forces came in collision at Alamance, and those 
of the government routed the malcontents. 

However this movement may be regarded, there is one aspect 
it must always bear : the people of the interior of North Carolina 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE ii 

manifested by their action a spirit of freedom and a resolution to 
redress their grievances which cannot fail to appeal strongly to 
the sympathies of all patriots. 

Hardly had the province become quiet after that unfortunate 
afifair before there was another clash between the divergent 
interests of the mother country and the colonists, during the course 
of which the resolutions and representations, forming what are 
termed State papers, promulgated on behalf of North Carolina, 
reflected the highest credit on the province because of the ability 
and intelligence with which they were prepared. The design to 
tax the colonies, although apparently abandoned in 1766, was 
again revived, and in view of possible resistance it was enacted 
that persons charged with obstructing officers should be trans- 
ported to England for trial; and, there being some troubles at 
Boston, the charter of Massachusetts was virtually annulled and 
the port of Boston was closed. Indeed, the British Government 
claimed the right of annulling the charters and the constitutions 
of all the colonies; and, as if to indicate the British idea of a 
proper colonial constitution, ordained one for the province of 
Canada, in which the people were denied the right of participating, 
the power of legislation being vested exclusively in a council 
appointed by the Crown. 

These proceedings led to the wildest excitement, and pre- 
cipitated a crisis that brought the people to the resolute pur- 
pose of firm resistance. While sending shiploads of provisions 
to succor the poor people of Boston, the inhabitants of North 
Carolina, careful of themselves, elected a Provincial Congress 
to direct their affairs, that being an unconstitutional body, un- 
known to the laws and not under the power of the governor 
to prorogue or dissolve it. It met in August, 1774, and at 
once established a system of committees of safety throughout the 
province. 

Now the time was approaching when the manhood of the 
people was to be subjected to the crucial ordeal. They were 
brought face to face with the question. Would they fight for their 
liberties or submit to the government, trusting to the fairness 



12 NORTH CAROLINA 

and sense of justice of their fellow-subjects of Great Britain? It 
was a momentous issue, involving their lives and their fortunes, 
and the degradation of a traitor's doom in case of defeat ; and of 
these pains and penalties and of the doubtful result of the contest 
the people of North Carolina were fully aware. 

During all this time population had continued to pour into 
the western counties, and there were many settlements of Luther- 
ans with their ministers, and Scotch-Irish with their Presbyterian 
pastors, who had established local schools and had fostered educa- 
tion, religion and morality, as well as the principles of liberty, in 
their forest homes. Particularly was this so in the region watered 
by the Catawba, while in that near Sandy Creek were considerable 
bodies of Baptists, ever zealous for liberty, and further east there 
had been large accessions to the Highlanders. 

There were several reasons that led the Highlanders to refrain 
from antagonizing the established government, for they had taken 
a strong and binding oath that forbade them to engage in insurrec- 
tion; so also many of the Regulators had, after the battle of 
Alamance, been required to make a solemn oath that they would 
obey the laws, and this oath and the recollection that it was the 
Eastern militia who defeated them in 1771 now controlled their 
action; but apart from these two classes the general sentiment in 
North Carolina was strong for resistance to the arbitrary measures 
of the British Government. Especially was this spirit manifested 
in Mecklenburg, where the Committee of Safety, on the 20th of 
May, 1775, adopted resolutions declaring independence, and eleven 
days later set up a local government to take the place of the one 
supplanted; and about the same time association papers were 
signed throughout all the counties, pledging the inhabitants to 
unite and co-operate to the last extremity for the purpose of 
securing their liberties. 

It was not long before the people were put to the test as to 
what venture they would make to sustain their resolves. The 
determined action of Abner Nash and his associates at New-Bern 
led to the precipitate flight of the royal governor. Colonel Martin, 
from his palace to Fort Johnston, at the mouth of the Cape Fear, 



THE STORY OE' THE PEOPLE 13 

and there he began to perfect designs for the subjugation of the 
province by a large British army in co-operation with the High- 
landers and Regulators of the interior. To prevent the use of 
the fort as the nucleus of such a hostile force a military detach- 
ment, organized by John Ashe, destroyed it and compelled the 
governor to take refuge on his sloop-of-war in the harbor. In 
February, when the British fleet was expected, the Highlanders 
and Regulators assembled at Cambelton, and Colonel James 
Moore, in command of the provincial forces, stood ready to dis- 
pute their progress. A large body of Regulators, however, 
changed the.ir minds, and, refusing to act further in behalf of the 
British, returned to their homes ; but the Highlanders, hoping to 
evade Colonel Moore, pressed on by another route toward Wil- 
mington, where they were to join the British forces. On the way, 
at Moore's Creek, they encountered the minute men of that 
district under Lillington, who had been reinforced by those of the 
New-Bern district under Caswell, while Thackston's batallion 
from the western counties was fast closing in on their rear. In 
the conflict that ensued the Highlanders were defeated, routed and 
dispersed, and subsequently they showed but little disposition to 
antagonize the other inhabitants of the province. 

Six thousand British regulars now arrived in the lower harbor, 
but the designs of Governor Martin had been frustrated. The 
Provincial Congress being in session, steps had been taken to 
meet the imminent danger. With great alacrity the minute men 
and militia responded to the call to arms, and more than 9000 
men, organized, officered and equipped, stood ready, under the 
command of General Ashe, to meet any advance of the British 
forces, who, however, disappointed at the defeat of their loyal 
friends, soon sailed away to attack Fort Moultrie at Charleston, 
where several North Carolina regiments, hurrying overland, 
arrived in time to aid in their utter discomfiture. 

It was during the time when this large British army, with 
its vast fleet of ships, lay in the Cape Fear, threatening the province 
with invasion and subjugation, that the stalwart statesmen of 
North Carolina, with a boldness and fortitude that should be ever 



14 NORTH CAROLINA 

memorable, made the first authoritative utterance for separation 
and independence. On April 12, 1776, they unanimously directed 
their delegates in the Continental Congress to concur in declaring 
independence and in making foreign alliances — steps which, once 
taken, left no bridge unburnt behind them. 

Truly it is to be said that no people were more forward, more 
pronounced, bolder or more resolute than the inhabitants of 
North Carolina in all measures and actions relating to the cause 
of American independence. Having determined to sever their 
connection with the British Empire, with order and system they 
proceeded, step by step, after the original call for their Provincial 
Congress in 1774, until they adopted a State constitution, estab- 
lishing a permanent government adapted in its various provisions 
to the requirements of a free and independent people. During the 
long struggle that ensued the patriotism of her people and their 
courage and constancy were equalled only by their wisdom, fore- 
sight and energy. They not only sought to develop local manu- 
factures, but the State, as well as the citizens, engaged in foreign 
trade to obtain needed supplies for the army and the people. 
When Washington's ragged regiments were suffering such hard- 
ships during the terrible winter of 1777 at Valley Forge, it was 
the supplies brought in by North Carolina and stored at South 
Quay that relieved their necessities, and cannon and clothing and 
munitions of war were successfully imported in large quantities. 
Her continental brigades, after aiding in the defense of South 
Carolina, served with Washington in New York, fought in Penn- 
sylvania, and later were surrendered by Lincoln at the fall of 
Charleston. An army subsequently raised by the State was sacri- 
ficed at Camden by the indiscretion of Gates ; but when Cornwallis 
took post at Charlotte he was so hedged in by the gallant patriot 
bands of that region that, upon the destruction of Ferguson and 
his corps at King's Mountain, through the intelligent and coura- 
geous action of the people themselves, not under the direction of 
any continental authority, that able British commander precipi- 
tately withdrew his army from North Carolina soil. 

Later, Cornwallis made his famous march through the State, 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 15 

seeking to overtake Greene and rescue the British prisoners 
captured at the battle of Cowpens ; faihng in his object, he accepted 
battle at Guilford Court House, where his army sufifered so 
heavily that he retired from North Carolina and marched to 
Virginia with the purpose of joining the British forces there, a 
movement that led to his eventual surrender at Yorktown. 

During all this period of doubtful war it is to be remarked 
that no North Carolinian who enrolled himself beneath the banner 
of his country ever fell away from the cause. Among the High- 
landers and Regulators and along the counties bordering on 
South Carolina, as well as in some parts of Rowan, there were 
many disaffected from the inception of the .struggle ; but of the 
original patriot bands there was never a single member to renounce 
his faith in independence or to slacken in his devotion to his 
country. The more doubtful the contest became, the deeper the 
clouds that obscured the sky, the higher rose their courage and 
the more resolute was their purpose to persevere and maintain 
the struggle, even though they should be driven from their homes 
and expelled into the forests far beyond the mountains. 

A record so bright is a glorious heritage of the people; and, 
indeed, such is the ancestry of the men of mark of North Carolina 
that they can proudly boast of their patriotic lineage. 

From father to son the traits of the early settlers have been 
perpetuated, somewhat modified, perhaps, by their surroundings 
and deepened by a virtuous life in the seclusion of their woodland 
homes, for our men ot mark are entirely the product of North 
Carolina and North Carolina influences. 

In the tide-water district and eastern section, where the Eng- 
lish predominated, and where, in the lowlands, negro labor found 
its most profitable employment, the people enjoyed large facilities 
of transportation, and trade thrived and wealth was amassed. But 
in the interior, for many years, facilities for marketing farm 
products were lacking ; and, notwithstanding the thrift and energy 
of the inhabitants, their chief accumulations were in the enhanced 
value of their lands and the increase of their slaves. But if the 
location was not favorable for the accumulation of wealth, it 



i6 NORTH CAROLINA 

developed habits of self-reliance and a love of liberty and demo- 
cratic tendencies not exceeded elsewhere in the colony. The 
attachment to freedom that had from the beginning been infused 
among the inhabitants was indeed so strongly tinctured with demo- 
cratic principles that even in colonial days Governor Dobbs repre- 
sented to his superiors in England that republicanism was more 
rife in North Carolina than in any other province. And indeed 
no aristocratic tendencies were ever manifested by the inhabitants, 
for while there were families that for several generations exercised 
great influence and measurably controlled public affairs, they were 
adherents of the popular party and were distinguished for their 
devotion to popular rights and democratic principles ; and, always, 
men sprung from the humbler walks of life were able through their 
personal merit to attain the highest positions under government. 
Nowhere else in America has there been less influence accorded to 
social station and to large wealth than among the democratic 
people of North Carolina, yet learning, capacity and ability have 
never been ignored. Indeed, North Carolina can proudly recall the 
distinguished merit of the great men who have adorned her annals 
and have added luster to her fame. She has ever been prolific of 
strong characters, and in colonial times as well as in the Revolu- 
tionary period her sons were wise in counsel and resolute in action. 
At the establishment of the Federal Constitution they rendered 
important services, first in aiding to secure the equality of the 
States in the Senate, and later in obtaining additional amend- 
ments that were safeguards to the rights of the citizens. 

Although her policy has ever been one of economy rather than 
of extravagant expenditure, yet, despite the scarcity of money 
among the inhabitants, the State in 1818 gave an order to Canova 
for a statue of Washington, to adorn the Capitol at Raleigh, with- 
out limitation as to cost; and until its destruction by fire North 
Carolina possessed the most imposing statue of the Father of his 
Country that ever was made. And about the same time the legis- 
lature employed in England a civil engineer of high reputation, at 
a large salary, to construct canals and to improve the waterways 
of the State; and when in 1835 a new Capitol was to be built, it 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 17 

provided for the erection of the finest public building at that time 
in America. With the incoming of railroads, the longest road in 
the world was built between Wilmington and Weldon, and the 
Raleigh and Gaston Railroad was, without regard to cost, hurried 
to completion. 

From an early period her judges have ever maintained a high 
reputation, not merely for learning, but for integrity and impartial 
administration of justice. The names of Taylor, Henderson, Hall, 
Gaston, Daniel, Ruffin, Nash, Pearson, Manly, Battle, and their 
successors on the Supreme bench, make a roll worthy of any 
commonwealth ; while North Carolina's representatives in national 
affairs — Iredell, Johnston, Macon, McKay, Strange, Henderson, 
Graham, Branch, Badger, Bragg, Dobbin, Mangum, Clingman, 
and a host of others^-form a galaxy of brilliant stars that will ever 
guide North Carolinians in the paths of honor and admirable 
government. 

At home the press has employed the best powers of some of 
her first citizens, among the most eminent of the editors being 
Gales and Boylan, at Raleigh; Hale, at Fayetteville ; Fulton, at 
Wilmington, and later Englehard and Saunders and Peter M. Hale 
and others of superior merit ; while for a fearless use of the power 
of the press at a time of great peril the name of Josiah Turner will 
forever be remembered. 

For many years the western counties suffered greatly for the 
want of trade facilities, and there was an antagonism between the 
west and east over the matter of taxation and of unequal repre- 
sentation in the Assembly. To correct these inequalities, western 
statesmen urged the establishment of new counties in that section, 
which would give them additional representation in the Assembly, 
and would enable them to call a convention that would alter the 
constitution conformably tn their desires. For a generation this 
was a cause of difference between the sections, until at length, by 
the aid of a few eastern votes, the west obtained its wish, and the 
convention of 1835 met and made changes in the constitution 
which were considered so sectional that when submitted to the 
people they did not receive in some of the eastern counties a single 



i8 NORTH CAROLINA 

vote, while in some of the counties of the west not a single vote was 
cast against their ratification. But constitutional changes could 
not of themselves eradicate disadvantages incident to the remote 
location of the western counties and their distance from the marts 
of trade. The causes that had closed the avenues to opulence con- 
tinued to exist, and the condition of the interior remained unfortu- 
nate until the North Carolina Railroad, chartered in 1848, was 
completed, affording to that region needed facilities for transporta- 
tion and development. 

Then ensued a period which has well been likened to the Golden 
Age, when the divergent interests of the sections were harmonized 
and the whole State unified and progress was made in every line, 
adding to the strength and importance of the commonwealth. 

The stream of emigrants which since the Revolution had passed 
out of the borders of North Carolina, first to the choice lands 
of Tennessee and then to the Western country from Indiana to 
Texas, measurably ceased. Education was greatly fostered, the 
public school system of the State being one of the best and most 
efficient in the entire Union, and many superior academies were 
established in every section. Agriculture prospered, wealth accu- 
mulated, and the people, deeply imbued with the softening 
influences of true religion, were virtuous, contented and happy. 
But this period, remarkable for its progress and notable advance- 
ment, was brought to a close by the unhappy sectional differences 
between the North and South and the great war between the 
States. In the progress of that fierce struggle the men of North 
Carolina gave to the world an example of heroism and fortitude, 
no less than of statesmanship, prudence and sagacity. 

At the call to arms her young men, practiced only in the arts 
of peace, abandoned their farms and sought the training camps 
and soon became invincible soldiers. 

With a total white population of 629,942, and with only 
110,085 white men between the ages of eighteen and forty-five 
years, North Carolina enrolled 125,000 Confederate soldiers, ac- 
cording to the report of her adjutant-general made in November, 
1864. Her total losses from all causes, as compiled from the Con- 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 19 

federate archives at Washington,, were 40,275. Her losses in the 
great battles in Virginia were generally between one-fourth and 
one-third of the entire Confederate loss, and in many battles the 
heaviest loss suffered was by some North Carolina regiment, while 
at Gettysburg, where thousands of her sons fell upon the field and 
her soldiers fought so courageously, the Twenty-sixth North Caro- 
lina Regiment gained the distinction of having suffered the 
heaviest loss sustained by any regiment during the entire war. 
True it is that North Carolinians were not surpassed by any of 
their brave companions in arms in gallantry on the field of battle, 
and by their courage and endurance they contributed largely to 
winning those victories which brought imperishable renown to 
Stonewall Jackson and the immortal Lee, and which made the 
army of Northern Virginia the most glorious army in the annals 
of war ; and as splendid as was their record, that of the statesmen 
at home was equally magnificent. With great sagacity the State 
purchased abroad and brought through the blockade immense 
stores of clothing and supplies, not only for her soldiers, but for 
her people on the farms, which in some measure mitigated their 
sufferings and enabled them with a more resolute spirit to with- 
stand the privations occasioned by the ravages of war. The con- 
tributions of North Carolina to the Confederate cause, in men, 
means and influences, were of the highest consequence, and were 
not equaled by those of any other State in the Confederacy. 

Finally the end came, involving the South in utter ruin, and 
ten years elapsed before conditions were again propitious for a 
new period of prosperity. But at the close of Governor Jarvis's 
administration, in 1884, there was held a State exhibition, which 
lasted about a month, and which gave many evidences that the 
people were once more happily realizing the fruits of their labors, 
and since that time the progress of the people has been an unfailing 
source of gratification. Not only has agriculture been greatly im- 
proved, but the forests and mines have likewise yielded wealth to 
the people, and the banking interests and railroad development 
have exceeded the most sanguine expectations. But more than all, 
attention being turned to manufacturing, the erection of cotton 



20 NORTH CAROLINA 

and other mills has proceeded with a rapidity unparalleled in any 
other State in the Union. The water-powers of our streams are 
no longer disregarded, but factories dot the banks of the rivers 
and abound along the railroad routes. Starting in 1875 with 
31 cotton mills, North Carolina in 1903 could boast of 236, and she 
increased her spindles from 54,500 to 1,800,000, and her looms 
from 14,428 to 530,000. In twenty-eight years she has multiplied 
her cotton industry thirty-three times. 

Such an industrial development has never been witnessed in 
any other community. But as gratifying as are these evidences 
of the thrift and energy and prosperity of the brave old Confed- 
erate soldiers and their worthy sons, one finds still greater cause 
for satisfaction in the steady progress made in intellectual and 
moral development. In religion, while all denominations have 
prospered, the expansion and growth of the Methodists and 
Baptists have been phenomenal, and even the most remote neigh- 
borhoods have their regular ministrations. 

The educational movement in North Carolina has been pressed 
onward with great vigor ; the public schools are on a firm and sub- 
stantial footing, while the university, the State colleges. Wake 
Forest, Trinity, Davidson, Guilford, Elon, and many other superior 
institutions of learning are ornaments of the State and the pride 
of the people. Indeed, it is thought that no State is doing more 
for public schools according to its means and financial ability than 
the State of North Carolina. In the year ending June 30, 1903, 
for every one hundred dollars of property, actual cash value, in 
the State, the people spent half a dollar on their public schools, 
and it is thought that no other State in the Union is making an 
equal effort for public education. Temperance is practiced, moral- 
ity strengthened, and religious devotion manifests itself not only 
in church edifices and large contributions, but in deeds of charity 
that gladden the hearts of orphans and bring consolation to the 
desolate. Such has been the result of the labors of the men of 
mark in North Carolina. 

But while with courageous hearts they vigorously pressed for- 
ward the work of material and moral as well as educational 



THE STORY OF THE PEOPLE 21 

development, they have ever been conservative in their ideas and 
in their poHtical action. Reared in communities where from 
generation to generation their forefathers lived, and surrounded 
by their kindred and hereditary friends, they have adhered to the 
old paths in the principles of government and to the old ideas of 
social ethics. Thus, if they illustrate the virtues of an enlightened 
democracy and the energies of a robust citizenship, they also repre- 
sent that constancy and conservatism which would be the sheet- 
anchor of our country were political storms ever to arise threaten- 
ing the stability of our beneficent institutions. 






SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 
By SAMUEL A. ASHE 

'ROM the establishment of the Union until 1824, 
a period of thirty-six years, with the single 
exception of the term from 1797 to 1801, all 
the Presidents were citizens of Virginia and 
Southern influences dominated public affairs, 
much to the dissatisfaction of New England, 
whose statesmen were thus foiled in the gratification of their 
ambition. 

As slavery constituted the important difference between the 
sections, there sprang up at the North a strong desire to restrict 
its spread, with the view of obtaining a preponderating influence 
for the Northern States; and about 1833 this sectional purpose 
was strengthened by the dissemination of abolition views, to which 
British agitators and missionary orators actively and largely con- 
tributed. 

About 1794 two parties arose in the Union, but as the result 
of the unpatriotic course of the New England Federal leaders 
during the War of 1812, the Federal Party gradually disappeared, 
and there was but one party until 1831, when Henry Clay, who 
had been a leading Republican, was nominated for the Presidency 
at a convention of National Republicans in opposition to the 
administration Republicans ; and later his followers took the name 
of Whigs, his opponents calling themselves Democratic Repub- 
licans, or Democrats. 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 23 

In 1850, when the territory acquired as a result of the war 
with Mexico was being dealt with by Congress, those who favored 
the restriction of slavery were so aggressive that a crisis arose, 
and Southern statesmen asserted a purpose to secede from the 
Union if an amicable settlement should not be agreed on. Sec- 
tional feeling, which had existed for many years, now became 
intense, and secession, which had been an accepted doctrine of 
State's rights from the beginning of the government, was largely 
regarded at the South as a legitimate and proper remedy for 
the Southern States. To preserve the Union, Mr. Clay at that 
time proposed a compromise, which successfully passed Congress, 
although bitterly opposed by determined sectionalists, both from 
the North and from the South. In the House the compromise 
received 109 votes against 97 in opposition. Twenty-nine South- 
ern Democrats opposed it as not being satisfactory for Southern 
interests ; while every Southern Whig but one voted for it. Seven- 
teen Northern Democrats and fifty Northern Whigs voted against 
it, because they were free soilers and restrictionists and were 
unwilling to compromise with the slave power; while thirty-two 
Northern Democrats and twenty-four Northern Whigs sup- 
ported it. 

Although that compromise tided over the particular occasion, 
the drift of sentiment manifested by the sectional character of 
the vote boded renewed trouble. The vote showed the tendency 
of both parties at the North to free-soilism, and particularly indi- 
cated that the Northern Whigs adhered to that policy or principle 
as being superior to the peace of the Union. Indeed, so rapid was 
the free-soil movement among the Northern Whigs that a few 
years later the Whig Party broke up and disappeared, many 
of Ihe Southern Whigs becoming fierce Southern Democrats, and 
many of the Northern Whigs, along with some Northern Demo- 
crats, uniting with the Abolitionists to form what was known 
as the Black Republican Party. 

About the time of the disappearance of the Whig Party, there 
arose what was called the American or Know-Nothing Party, 
which lasted one campaign only. 



24 NORTH CAROLINA 

By i860, through immigration, the North had grown very 
strong and powerful, and the anti-slavery sentiment predominated 
throughout the Northern States, although generally it was held 
that as slavery was a domestic institution of the individual States, 
it could not be interfered with or abolished by the Federal Gov- 
ernment. The Democratic Party was the most numerous, and 
was apparently securely entrenched in power. At that time 
Stephen A. Douglas was the great Democratic leader at the North 
and Northwest, and his admirers desired his nomination for the 
Presidency. But at the National Democratic Convention there 
was a divergence between Mr. Douglas's Northern friends and 
the Southern Democrats, which resulted in a split and the pres- 
entation of two Democratic Presidential tickets. The sectional 
situation was so acute that many of the old Whigs presented a 
third ticket, representing what was called the Constitutional 
Union Party, the candidates being Bell and Everett, while the 
Republicans nominated Abraham Lincoln, who was elected. The 
cornerstone of the Republican Party was hostility to slavery. It 
was asserted by their leaders that there was an irrepressible con- 
flict between free and slave labor, and that the Union could not 
exist half free and half slave, and some of the extremists 
denounced the Constitution as a covenant with death and a league 
with hell, and this sentiment largely prevailed among the masses 
of that party. The progress made in these Republican tenets 
left no room to doubt that within the Union slavery would eventu- 
ally be interfered with by the Federal Government, despite the 
Constitutional safeguards which were intended to protect the 
domestic institutions of the separate States. Shortly after the 
election of Mr. Lincoln, several of the Southern States at once 
passed ordinances of secession. The border States and North 
Carolina were not so precipitate. Virginia asked for a peace 
conference, which met at Washington City on February 4, 1861, 
the same day that the temporary government of the Confederate 
States was formed at Montgomery. The seceded States were 
not represented, but delegates were present from the Northern 
States, and indeed all the States of the Union except those on 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 25 

the Pacific and two or three Western States. Concihatory meas- 
ures were proposed and were adopted by the conference, ahhough 
not acceptable to the North CaroHna delegates; but as mild as 
they were, the Republicans in Congress did not consider them. 
Mr. Lincoln and his friends would make no effort to quiet the 
storm that the success of their sectional party had raised. 

In North Carolina, as the situation was entirely novel, so there 
were several points of view. At the Presidential election, Breck- 
inridge had received 48,500 votes. Bell 45,000 and Douglas 2700, 
and the disposition of the people was somewhat indicated by 
their votes ; but the election of Mr. Lincoln on the one hand, and 
the hasty secession of the cotton States on the other hand, became 
new elements, making the crisis sharp and intense. Ultra South- 
ern men, embracing many who had been old Whigs, as well as 
many who had been Democrats, favored standing with the Gulf 
States and immediate secession ; while others of both the old parties 
deemed the election of Mr. Lincoln not a sufficient cause to rush 
into a disruption of the Union. Still, generally, it was considered 
that the Union had originally been formed to secure the rights 
of the people and of the State, and that the preservation of these 
rights was a matter of the first importance, superior to the main- 
tenance and perpetuity of the Union. There were some, however, 
who held the contrary view, — that the Union was a matter of the 
first consideration and the rights of the people were subordinate 
to that; while others felt that any effort to escape by an attempt 
at withdrawal from the Union would be futile and would end in 
disaster. The larger part of the people deemed it best at that 
time to pursue what was called the "Watch and Wait" policy, 
and were opposed to hasty action. In the legislature, which met 
as usual in November, this sentiment prevailed. A bill to call 
a convention was introduced on December 21st. After a month's 
delay, early in February, through the strenuous efforts of Judge 
Samuel J. Person, W. W. Avery, Victor C. Barringer, and others, 
a bill was passed for the election of delegates to a convention, with 
a provision annexed, that each voter should also, at the same time, 
cast a ballot for or against holding the said convention, and that 



26 NORTH CAROLINA 

the popular will should determine the question. By a few hun- 
dred votes the people refused to call a convention at that time. 
Feeling ran very high, and there was much bitterness between the 
contending factions. The secessionists were stigmatized as 
traitors and disunionists, while those who still adhered to the 
Union were denounced as submissionists and otherwise subjected 
to personal opprobrium. 

At length, early in April, a month after Mr. Lincoln was 
inaugurated, the Washington administration was influenced by 
the governors of some of the Northern States, that had for the 
first time elected Republican governors, to determine on war, 
and it skilfully brought about such conditions as led to the bom- 
bardment of Fort Sumter, which greatly inflamed the Northern 
people, uniting them in the purpose of defending the flag of the 
Union. Seizing on the opportune occasion, Mr. Lincoln called 
for 75,000 troops, requiring North Carolina and the other States 
to furnish the quotas assigned them, for the purpose of coercing 
the seceded States. These events made it clear that there was 
left to North Carolina only the choice as to which side in the 
war she would espouse, whether her people would fight for or 
against the seceded States. The effect was electrical. All differ- 
ences among the people vanished. How quick and thorough was 
the change is well illustrated by the following statement made by 
the Hon. George Howard, who was a Superior Court judge: 
"On Monday, April 12, 1861, I held court in Danbury, Thomas 
Settle solicitor. Messrs. J. M. Leach and Settle asked the use 
of the court-room for political speaking — both were Whigs seek- 
ing the congressional nomination by appeals to the Union senti- 
ment of the district. I granted their request. After reaching 
the hotel, A. M. Scales and Robert McLean came over and 
remarked, that if they believed the rumor they had heard, that 
Fort Sumter had been fired on, they would reply to Leach and 
Settle, and asked me what I thought of it. I told them whether 
true or not something of like character would soon occur. They 
returned to the court-house, and soon I was informed that they 
and Hon. J. D. Gilmer had concluded to speak. All spoke 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 27 

Leach, Settle and Gilmer as Union Whigs, Scales and McLean 
as State's Rights Democrats. Court adjourned in a few days 
and I left Danbury in a buggy with Settle for his home — the 
road passing near but not through Madison. As we approached 
Madison, chatting pleasantly, suddenly Settle sprang up and, peer- 
ing into the distance, exclaimed: 'What's that?' I looked and 
could just distinguish a flag floating from a building in Madison. 
Settle in a highly excited tone said : 'It is a secession flag — some- 
thing has happened — Madison has been a strong Union town.' 
Just then we saw several persons riding toward us. Settle hailed 
a gentleman on horseback reading a newspaper, asking, 'What's 
the matter?' Promptly came the answer, 'Haven't you heard 
the news ? Sumter attacked. Lincoln has called for 75,000 troops. 
Everybody is for war. Governor Reid is speaking at Madison 
— volunteers are enlisting.' Settle, turning to me, said: 'I must 
go to Madison and get right.' I objected, telling him he needn't 
hurry, there would be both time and occasion. He insisted. At 
last we agreed to go, he to speak five minutes and then go on. As 
we drove up, we could hear Governor Reid in the upper room of 
the building, while about the door at the ground entrance there 
was quite a crowd. As soon as we came up. Settle sprang up, 
and waving his hand aloft, cried out: 'I was all wrong, I was 
all wrong — you are all right, you are all right ;' and leaping from 
the buggy, he mounted one of the buttresses to the doorway, and 
until I called 'Time up,' poured forth a most passionate appeal 
'for every man to stand by the South.' We then went on to 
his home. While en route, he said he must resign his office and 
go into the war. I pressed him not to do so until the end of the 
circuit; but he would listen to no delay, insisting that he must 
resign, and soliciting the appointment of Hon. John Kerr. The 
next Monday at Rockingham, soon after court met, the sound 
of fife and drum was heard from several directions, and soon 
there marched into Wentworth about one hundred and fifty volun- 
teers. At recess I noticed both Scales and Settle in the ranks. 
An amusing incident occurred. A Mexican war veteran, one Han- 
cock, was commanding. As he faced the long line, he called out. 



28 NORTH CAROLINA 

'Right face.' Every one faced right, save Scales and Settle, and 
both of them faced about. Thereupon two companies were formed 
and Scales and Settle were elected captains. In a week or two I 
returned to Greensboro. As I was passing the residence of 
Hon. J. D. Gilmer, he called to me, and, coming out to the buggy, 
said with deep emotion : 'On my return home, I found that the 
very hour when I was speaking in Danbury, my son was donning 
his uniform and hastening away to Fort Macon. We are all one 
now.' " 

The Grahams, Gilmers, Vances, and other strenuous opponents 
of secession hastened to seize arms and march to the front. Com- 
panies were formed all over the State, and the forts were seized 
and held for the State, and Governor Ellis convened the legisla- 
ture in special session; and on May 1st a convention was called 
to meet on May 20th. Every member of the convention favored 
an immediate and irrevocable withdrawal from the Union. 
Mr. Badger and forty other members of the body preferred to 
base their action on the right of the people to change their govern- 
ment by revolution, as the colonists did in 1775, and which no 
American patriot ever denied; but a majority of the convention 
deemed it best to assert that the sovereign State of North Caro- 
lina had an inherent sovereign right to withdraw from the Union 
of States. While Mr. Badger did not vote on the question of 
adopting the secession ordinance, he and every other member 
signed it. The die being cast, all now vied in patriotic endeavors 
to maintain the war for Southern independence. 

Necessarily the party lines that had divided the people while 
citizens of the United States disappeared when they ceased to be 
citizens of that country ; and all being enlisted in a great common 
work, new parties did not arise. Yet former associations had 
their natural influence. Those who for years had admired and 
loved Graham and Vance still admired and loved them, and so 
those who followed Jefferson Davis and Governor Bragg still 
trusted them above all others. When the convention that was 
elected in May, 1861, proposed to choose delegates to represent 
the State in the Confederate Congress, the former Whigs or 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 29 

Union men held a caucus and determined on their candidates, and 
notwithstanding they were in the minority, some of their candi- 
dates were elected. From their standpoint, Mr. Davis, the Con- 
federate president, and the Democratic governor of the State, 
were too partial to the original secessionists, and resolutions 
aimed at that alleged party spirit were introduced in the conven- 
tion, but by a close vote were laid on the table. There were other 
evidences of divergences in the convention, but the purpose to 
stand together for the war was manifest. Even on the last day 
of the fourth and final session of the convention. May 13, 1862, 
W. W. Holden, a delegate from Wake County, introduced a reso- 
lution that passed unanimously, thanking the ladies of the State 
for their patriotic ardor in the prosecution of the war. 

On the death of Governor Ellis on July 7, 1861, Henry T. 
Clark, Speaker of the Senate, became ex-oificio governor until a 
successor was elected and qualified. The election was to be held 
in August, 1862, and the convention directed that the new gov- 
ernor should be inaugurated on the 7th of September. Some of 
the friends of Colonel William Johnston met at Charlotte and 
presented him as a candidate for governor; while some of the 
friends of Colonel Z. B. Vance, then a gallant and admired sol- 
dier serving in Virginia, presented his name, and meetings were 
held in many counties recommending his election. There was no 
State convention held by the adherents of either. Vance was 
generally regarded as the soldiers' candidate, and there were some 
75,000 North Carolina soldiers at that time, and Vance was 
elected, and was inaugurated early in September. He at once 
made many changes in the State administration. 

In the Assembly many new names appeared, and the majority 
of that body were not in accord with the Confederate adminis- 
tration. W. W. Holden, who had for many years been the editor 
of the principal Democratic paper in the State, had become dis- 
appointed at not receiving high rewards from his party. He had 
been instrumental in securing the adoption of free suflfrage by 
his party in 1852, and in 1859, when a movement was made to 
alter the method of taxation, by which negroes should be taxed 



30 NORTH CAROLINA 

at their value, the Standard, Holden's paper, strongly advocated 
it, but his party did not follow him, while the Whigs made it a 
part of their platform. In i860, Mr. Holden hoped to be nom- 
inated by the Democrats for governor, but was beaten by Gov- 
ernor Ellis. In the campaign he did not advocate the Democratic 
platform; and in the Presidential election he favored Stephen 
A. Douglas. Under those circumstances, the legislature of i860, 
which was Democratic, did not elect him public printer, but 
showed that favor to John Spellman, who about that time started 
the State Journal. Mr. Holden was, however, very fierce after 
the election of Lincoln as President and oflfered a reward in his 
paper to those who would plot for Lincoln's head. His diver- 
gences from the Democratic leaders, however, led to criticisms 
and to such a tone in the conduct of his paper as to foster dis- 
satisfaction and desertion among the soldiers in the field. When 
the legislature assembled in November, 1862, its tone was mani- 
fest by the election of Holden as public printer; and Governor 
Vance informed President Davis, in October, 1862, that "the 
late election shows conclusively that the original advocates of 
secession no longer hold the ear of the people; and that without 
the influence of the old Union men, the present status could not 
be maintained forty-eight hours." The spirit of faction now 
indeed made itself manifest. Step by step, the Standard proceeded 
to dissipate the hold which the Confederate Government had on 
the affections of the people, and a majority of the legislature pur- 
sued the same course. At length, the antagonism toward the 
Confederate Government by this faction became so extreme that 
to arrest it, on the 12th day of August, 1863, a great soldiers' 
convention was held by delegates from each regiment of troops 
from North Carolina in the army of Northern Virginia. The 
convention met at Orange Court House and appointed a com- 
mittee to prepare an address to the people of North Carolina, 
which shortly afterward was published. In their address they 
say: "That there is an Union feeling proper among her people 
we cannot believe; on the contrary, there is, we believe, a very 
unanimous sentiment of hostility to any settlement of our diifi- 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 31 

culties, except upon terms that shall secure to us independence and 
peace upon a lasting basis. But while this is our belief, we can- 
not shut our eyes to the conviction that there are parties in our 
State who are endeavoring to combine certain elements of dis- 
content and party feeling into a faction, to make war for an 
unholy purpose upon the authorities, bringing the righteous cause 
in which we are engaged into disrepute among our people, and to 
thwart the designs of patriotic men in their labors for the public 
good. The sentiments of the parties referred to find utterance 
principally through the columns of the Raleigh Standard. 'Move- 
ments for peace' have been proposed in North Carolina, taking 
the shape generally of a proposition to hold a convention of the 
people of the South, inviting similar conventions of the 
people of the North, to meet them for an adjustment of our diffi- 
culties." The address speaks of these measures as "the prompt- 
ings of a discontented and despondent spirit, if not of actual 
treason and disloyalty." "All men must be held morally and 
legally to intend the natural and necessary consequences of their 
acts; and if this be so, the conclusion is irresistible, that when 
these men are called tipon to render support to the cause of their 
country and they refused to do so, but threatened violent resist- 
ance to the law, they are prepared for submission and for reunion. 
Nor does it matter whether they avow these sentiments or deny 
them, if they are prepared for resistance to the law, the most 
essential to the defense of the country, does not their conduct 
lead directly to this result? It would be unwise, as it would be 
unjust, to attempt to magnify the importance of these manifesta- 
tions of disloyalty; but they cannot be without evil tendency in 
encouraging our soldiers to desert their colors and abandon their 
comrades, in repressing their ardor, in sowing the seeds of dis- 
trust and despondency among the people of our sister States, and 
in encouraging the enemy to persist in his designs of conquest, 
prolonging thereby the horrors and distresses of the war. Be- 
yond this, it is possible that the conduct of these men may bring 
on us a calamity to be deplored even by themselves. It is not 
impossible that these men should succeed in lighting the blaze of 



32 NORTH CAROLINA 

intestine civil war in our own State." The address then urged 
the quieting of factions and renewed devotion to the Confederate 
cause. It was probably not without some effect, but the faction 
still persisted. Under the ordinances of the convention and acts 
of Assembly steps had been taken to import goods from abroad 
embracing munitions of war, clothing for the soldiers, medicines 
and other necessaries ; and Governor Vance faithfully carried out 
these measures, and the importations by the State were most im- 
portant; and otherwise Governor Vance sought to strengthen 
the Confederate armies. In no other State was the Conscript 
Law so thoroughly and so well enforced as in North Carolina, and 
the State sent more troops in proportion to population to the war 
than any other State. Yet faction held its course, and Holden 
being regarded as a traitor, daily injuring the Confederate cause, 
in September a Georgia brigade passing through Raleigh wrecked 
the Standard office ; and the next morning a Raleigh mob in retal- 
iation destroyed the printing office of the State Journal, a paper 
which warmly sustained the Confederate administration. This 
was but an illustration of the evil effects of the factious oppo- 
sition to the Confederate Government that was fostered by dis- 
satisfied politicians and which was so strongly denounced by the 
convention of soldiers. In the following year, Governor Vance 
sought a re-election as governor, urging a continuance of the 
war for independence, and he was opposed by W. W. Holden, 
who advocated peace without regard to Southern independence. 
Governor Vance was elected, receiving 43,000 votes and Holden 
29,000. The legislature then elected was more in accord with 
the Confederate Government than the legislature chosen in 1862 ; 
but these factional differences left an indelible mark, and their 
results were plainly seen when the Confederacy was over- 
thrown and the people fell under the power of the Federal 
Government. 

In 1865, when General Sherman arranged a capitulation of 
Johnston's army, he recognized the validity of the existing gov- 
ernments in the different Southern States, and Johnston's troops 
were to be marched to the respective State capitals, where they 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 33 

were to deposit their arms and then be disbanded, and the existing 
State governments were to restore the States to the Union. This 
was on the understanding that the war was over, and it might 
very well have been done. President Lincoln on his visit to 
Richmond, on April 4th, assented to a call for the existing legis- 
lature of Virginia to reassemble with the view of their withdrawing 
the Virginia troops from General Lee's army, and desisting from 
resistance to the general government; but on its being suggested 
that he regarded that as the rightful legislature of the State, he 
withdrew his assent in the last telegram sent by him before his 
assassination, on April 12th, the policy of the Federal Government 
being not to recognize as lawful the then government of any 
Southern State. The South being quiet. President Johnson, in 
May, 1865, invited Governor Swain and Hon. B. F. Moore and 
Mr. William Eaton to advise with him about the reconstruction 
of the State, and these gentlemen urged that, inasmuch as Gov- 
ernor Vance was imprisoned, the Speakers of the two. Houses 
should call the legislature together, and the legislature would call 
a convention that would restore the State to the Union. Presi- 
dent Johnson, however, would not agree to recognize either the 
legislature or any State officer elected during the war. Presi- 
dent Lincoln had prepared a plan to restore the Southern States 
to their places in the Union, which had the approval of his Cabi- 
net; and President Johnson followed that plan. It required the 
appointment of a provisional governor and the calling of a con- 
vention to act in the name of the people of the State. Other 
North Carolinians being present, they recommended to the Presi- 
dent the appointment of W. W. Holden as provisional gov- 
ernor, and that appointment being made. Governor Holden called 
a convention, the delegates being elected only by those white 
citizens who could vote under the President's plan of procedure. 
The convention met on the 2d of October, and by its action 
restored the State to the Union, and the fact was announced 
in a proclamation made by President Johnson, and the Chief Jus- 
tice of the United States opened the Federal Court at Raleigh. 
This reconstruction was based on the idea that North Carolina 



34 NORTH CAROLINA 

possessed Statehood and that her old constitution was still her 
fundamental law. 

At that time the original secessionists were in great disfavor; 
and the majority of the convention were of those who belonged 
to Holden's faction during the war, many of whom were bitterly 
hostile to the Confederate element. On the second day of the 
session, as Judge Howard was taking his seat, Mr. William A. 
Wright, a very conservative and cautious man, approached him 
and said: "Howard, do you know what sort of people we have 
here? Why, there are forty would hang you out of that win- 
dow." Judge Howard and Judge Manly and those who affiliated 
with them proposed an ordinance repealing the secession ordi- 
nance of May 20, 1861 ; but the majority were not disposed to 
show that respect to the convention of 1861, notwithstanding the 
distinguished citizens who composed it, and insisted on passing 
an ordinance declaring that the action of the convention of 1861 
had at all times been an absolute nullity. The convention, acting 
on the idea that the Constitution of 1776 was the fundamental 
law, provided for the election of governor and other State officers 
and of the legislature under the terms and conditions formulated 
by President Lincoln and announced by President Johnson. The 
action of the convention being satisfactory to the President, he 
declared North Carolina a State in the Union and entitled to 
representation in the Congress of the United States, and the 
people regarded themselves as citizens of the United States. At 
the election in November, 1865, Jonathan Worth was chosen by 
the people governor over W. W. Holden; and at the regular 
election, in 1866, he was again elected governor ; and the Supreme 
Court and other courts of the State enforced the laws and 
observed the State and Federal constitutions. 

Congress, however, did not assent to the proposition that North 
Carolina was entitled to representation in that body, and would 
not admit her senators and representatives to their seats. At 
length, in March, 1867, Congress proposed to establish negro 
suffrage at the South, and passed a measure declaring that there 
was no civil government in any Southern State, and denying 



SECESSION AND RECONSTRUCTION 35 

North Carolina Statehood, and providing for the government of 
the territory within the limits of North Carolina by a major-gen- 
eral, who was authorized to take steps to form a constitution and 
a government therein founded on negro suffrage. 

This destruction of the State government and establishment of 
negro suffrage by an act of Congress was upheld largely by the 
factionists who had supported Holden in 1862 and 1864, and 
those who had voted for him at the election of 1865, while the 
other citizens of the State generally opposed it with great vehe- 
mence. The major-general requested all the officers in North 
Carolina to continue to discharge their functions, but subject to 
his supreme power to direct their action and to remove them at 
pleasure and to appoint others to their places. He required the 
judges to disobey certain enactments of the legislature and to 
administer in the courts the orders which he issued. He caused, 
under the act of Congress, a registration to be made of the male 
negroes twenty-one years of age and of the whites, but disfran- 
chised some 11,000 of the white citizens; and delegates to a con- 
vention were elected and a new constitution was framed, pro- 
viding for negro suffrage; and by his order an election was 
held for the ratification of the constitution and the election of 
officers provided for in that instrument ; the negroes being allowed 
to vote at that election. The new government went into opera- 
tion upon the acceptance of the constitution by Congress, on the 
25th of June, 1868, and Governor Holden was inaugurated on 
July 4, 1868, he having been elected when the constitution was 
voted for. At the election the people had divided on the ques- 
tion of negro suffrage; but after the legislature met, its course 
in issuing bonds and on other material subjects raised other issues 
that inflamed the people. In 1870 occurred the Holden-Kirk 
war, in the midst of which a new legislature was elected that 
proved conservative. The action of this body was most impor- 
tant. It was largely composed of young men who had served 
under Lee and Jackson, and they had resolution and firmness as 
well as patriotism and wisdom. They impeached and deposed 
Governor Holden, but quieted the State. Under their wise man- 



36 



NORTH CAROLINA 



agement such political foundations were laid that the great bulk 
of the white people began to co-operate. Questions involving 
the races and their relations lay at the bottom of political action ; 
and gradually the whites consolidated sufficiently for them, in 
1875, to alter the constitution so far as to permit legislation that 
would protect the eastern counties from the domination of negro 
majorities. For twenty years this new system remained in force 
and quiet reigned, and the people were happy, contented and 
prosperous. At the end of that period, however, by a combina- 
tion of the Populist Party and the Republicans, that system of 
county government was repealed, and the effect was so positive 
that immediately the whites again consolidated and amended 
the State constitution so as to deprive all negroes who could 
not read and write of the privilege of voting. 

It was largely on these lines of race issues that the public men 
of the State have divided since the eventful period when the 
Southern Confederacy was overthrown and North Carolina was 
brought back into the Union. 





ABRAHAM ALEXANDER 




Abraham Alexander, the chairman of the 

Mecklenburg Convention of the 19th and 20th 
of May, 1775, was born in 1718. He was an 
influential and active magistrate of the county 
of Mecklenburg before and after the Revolu- 
tion, and was generally the honored chairman 
of the Inferior Court. In 1762 he was a member of the council 
during the administration of Governor Dobbs. 

He was one of the trustees and directors named in the convey- 
ance by Henry G. McCulloh, agent for George A. Selwyn, of a 
tract of three hundred and sixty acres of land in the city of 
Charlotte, and upon which the city now stands. The considera- 
tion was £90 lawful money. The date of the conveyance was 
15th of January, 1767, and the other trustees and directors 
were Thomas Polk and John Frohock. In the latter part of 1765 
the same land was donated to the same commissioners "to hold 
in trust for the county of Mecklenburg, on which to erect a court- 
house, prison and stocks." 

He was a member of the Assemblies of 1769 and 1771 and also 
of the Provincial Congress of the 25th of August, 1774, which was 
the first Assembly which was held independent of royal authority. 
He was one of the fifteen trustees of Queen's College of Char- 
lotte, which was chartered by the colonial legislature which met 
at New-Bern in December, 1770. This charter was repealed by 



38 NORTH CAROLINA 

royal proclamation-, but was granted again in 1777 by the Gen- 
eral Assembly, the name of the institution being changed to 
Liberty Hall Academy. Abraham Alexander was reappointed a 
trustee. 

When the convention of the 19th of May, 1775, met in Char- 
lotte, the organization was perfected by the election of a chairman 
in the person of Abraham Alexander. On the following day were 
adopted the resolutions which absolved the citizens of that county 
from allegiance to the Crown, and which are known in the histories 
as the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. 

After the involuntary retreat of Josiah Martin, the royal gov- 
ernor, the government of the State was vested in a Provincial 
Congress for the whole State and Committees of Safety for each 
county of not less than twenty-one persons, who were to be elected 
annually by the people of each county. Abraham Alexander was 
elected chairman of the committee for Mecklenburg, and saw that 
the laws of the committee were strictly enforced. It was this 
committee which met in Charlotte on the 31st of May, 1775, and 
adopted a series of rules and regulations for the internal govern- 
ment of the county, a necessary sequel to the proceedings of the 
convention of the 20th of May, which adopted the Declaration of 
Independence. 

Abraham Alexander was a most worthy, exemplary and influ- 
ential member of society. He died in 1786, and is buried at Sugar 
Creek Presbyterian Church, which he had served for many years 
as a ruling elder. 

W. A. Withers. 




NATHANIEL ALEXANDER 




' N treating of the War of the Revolution, history 
has done ample justice to the bravery, trials 
and sufiferings of those who fought for inde- 
pendence, yet little is known of a department 
of the army which carried relief to the stricken 
patriots and brought back to health many 
whose wounds seemed to render recovery well-nigh hopeless. 
Among those who ministered to the sick and wounded during the 
course of the war was Nathaniel Alexander, who held a com- 
mission as surgeon, or "chirurgeon," in the Continental Line, and 
became a member of Congress and governor of North Carolina 
after the return of peace. 

Dr. Alexander was born in Mecklenburg County, North Caro- 
lina, on the 5th day of March, 1756. His father, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Moses Alexander, was an influential citizen of the colony 
who served in the Cherokee boundary expedition of 1767. He was 
also commissary of the Mecklenburg regiment in Governor 
Tryon's first campaign against the Regulators in 1768, and filled 
the same post under General Waddell in the spring of 1771, when 
Tryon's second campaign was in progress. During the same 
troubles he led a detachment which marched from Charlotte to the 
relief of Salisbury when the latter place was threatened by the 
Regulators in March, 1771. 

His son, Nathaniel Alexander, subject of this sketch, was edu- 



40- NORTH CAROLINA 

cated at Princeton College, New Jersey, and graduated therefrom 
in 1776. Having devoted some time to the study of medicine, he 
was commissioned surgeon in the North Carolina Continental Line, 
or regulars, in 1778, and served until 1782, when hostilities ceased. 
For several years after the war Dr. Alexander practiced his pro- 
fession at the High Hills of the Santee in South Carolina, but 
later returned to Charlotte. He became a member of the North 
Carolina House of Commons in 1797, representing Mecklenburg 
County. He was State senator from Mecklenburg at two sessions, 
in 1801 and 1802. In 1803 he was elected to the Congress of the 
United States, and served from October 17, 1803, till March 3, 
1805. His course was so popular that on November S, 1805, he 
was elected governor of North Carolina. The duties of this office 
he discharged till November 24, 1807, when he was succeeded in 
the executive chair by Governor Benjamin Williams. 

Governor Alexander was particularly distinguished in his gener- 
ation as a friend of public education. From 1805 to 1807, prior 
to the period when the governor of the State was ex-ofUcio presi- 
dent of the board, he was president of the board of trustees of 
the University; and as governor he sought to impress upon the 
legislature the wisdom of providing some system of general edu- 
cation for the public. 

In his message of November 19, 1806, he took strong ground in 
favor of extended popular education. He said : "In a government 
constituted as ours, where the people are everything — where they 
are the fountain of all power — it becomes infinitely important that 
they be sufficiently enlightened to realize their interests and to 
comprehend the best means of advancing them. Indeed, it may be 
affirmed with truth that, unless they be informed, the duration 
of their liberties will be precarious, their enemies will seduce them 
from the pursuit of their true interest, or their prejudices will lead 



NATHANIEL ALEXANDER 



41 



necessary exercise of lawful authority, to discriminate the spirit 
of liberty from that of licentiousness — to cherish the one and to 
avoid the other. The inquiry is of vast consequence, and worthy 
of your serious consideration." 

His career, which promised so much of usefulness and advan- 
tage to the State and people, was, however, unhappily cut short 
by his death at Salisbury on March 8, 1808. 

Governor Alexander was married to a daughter of the famous 
Mecklenburg patriot. Colonel Thomas Polk; but as in the case 
of many other illustrious men, nature denied to him posterity, and 
he left no issue. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





JOHN McKNITT ALEXANDER 




OHN McKNITT ALEXANDER, secretary of 
the convention which assembled in Charlotte 
and adopted on May 20th, 1775, the resolutions 
which are known in history as the Mecklenburg 
Declaration of Independence, was born in 
Pennsylvania, near the Maryland line, in 1733. 
He was the son of James Alexander and the grandson of Joseph 
Alexander of Maryland. Upon reaching his majority in 1754, 
he emigrated to North Carolina along with his kinsmen. Five 
years afterward he married Jane, the daughter of William Bain, 
who also emigrated from Pennsylvania. His homestead is known 
as Alexandriana, and is located a few miles north of Charlotte. 
The name of the railroad station near it was recently changed 
to Croft. 

He was crown surveyor of Mecklenburg County for many years, 
and on account of his knowledge of boundary lines was a fre- 
quent witness at court in land suits, and great weight attached to 
his testimony. He also served his county as magistrate. He was 
a delegate to the convention which met at Hillsboro on the 21st 
of August, 177s, and also to the Provincial Congress which met at 
Halifax on the 4th of April, 1776, and which adopted resolutions 
instructing the delegates from North Carolina in the Continental 
Congress to unite with the delegates of the other colonies in* 
declaring independence and forming foreign alliances. In 1777 



JOHN McKNITT ALEXANDER 43 

he served as the first senator from Mecklenburg County under 
the new constitution. 

He was a trustee of Queen's College at Charlotte at the time 
of its charter by the Colonial Assemblies of 1770 and 1771, and 
again in 1777, when the institution was rechartered by the Gen- 
eral Assembly as Liberty Hall Academy. 

He was ruling elder of the Hopewell Presbyterian Church, and 
is buried in its graveyard. He served his church frequently as 
treasurer of the synod of the Carolinas. 

When a young man he was apprenticed to a tailor, and when he 
came to North Carolina he brought with him ready-made clothes 
and cloths to be made to order. He trafficked with his country- 
men, transporting his pelts on horseback to the city and returning 
with a fresh supply of goods. Prospering in business, he soon 
became a man of wealth and an extensive landholder. Shrewd, 
enterprising and successful, a man of principle and inspiring 
respect, in less than twenty years from his first crossing the 
Yadkin he was agitating with his fellow-citizens of Mecklenburg 
the rights of persons, of property and of conscience and resist- 
ing the encroachments of the king. He died in 18 17 at the 
advanced age of eighty-four years. He was a man of attractive 
social qualities, of dignity of manner, undoubted honesty and 
strong religious convictions. Among the prominent citizens of 
the State are to be found many of his descendants. 

He preserved the records of the Independence Convention of the 
19th and 20th of May, 1775, vintil his house was destroyed by fire 
in 1800. About five months thereafter (September 3d) he repro- 
duced the resolutions from memory. This paper came into 
possession of General William R. Davie and later of General 
Montfort Stokes, who published the same in 1831. The follow- 
ing note was added to the copy made by Mr. Alexander : "It may 
be worthy of notice here to observe that the foregoing statement, 
though fundamentally correct, may not literally correspond with 
the original record of the transaction of said declaration and court 
of inquiry, as all these records and papers were burned with the 
house on April 6, 1800, but previous to that time of 1800, a full 



44 



NORTH CAROLINA 



copy of the records, at the request of Dr. Hugh Williamson, then 
of New York, but formerly a representative in Congress from this 
State, was forwarded to him by Colonel William Polk, in order 
that those early transactions might fill their proper place in a 
history of the State then being written by Dr. Williamson in 
New York." 

Other copies were in possession of Rev. Humphrey Hunter and 
General Joseph Graham, both of whom were present when the 
original resolutions were adopted. Another copy was found in 
possession of Adam Brevard, whose brother, Ephraim Brevard, 
wrote and presented the resolutions to the convention for adoption. 
This reproduced copy is the same in substance as the copy pub- 
lished in Martin's History. The evidence in regard to the adoption 
of the resolutions was published by the General Assembly of 1831, 
and is overwhelming, although the original was destroyed by fire. 

W. A. Withers. 






'-7-i'-'7.°.^.-I--ij.. 





ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 

ILEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS, the most 
distinguished citizen of the State connected with 
the important work of transportation, was born 
near FrankHnton, in Franklin County, on the 
23d day of July, 1841, and his career presents 
a fine illustration of the capabilities of native 
North Carolinians to achieve high distinction in the several walks 
of life. Through many generations his ancestors have been North 
Carolinians. The first of the Andrews family to come into North 
Carolina was Thomas Andrews, who in 1726 patented 200 acres 
of land in the lower end of Bertie, and twelve years later pur- 
chased a tract on the north side of the Roanoke, then called the 
Morratuck River, adjoining the lands of George Williams, in the 
upper part of Bertie, near the Northampton line, and there made 
his home. He was joined in 1749 by William Andrews and 
Samuel, who came from Southampton County, Virginia, where 
many of that family were living as early as the year 1700. 

One of the sons of William Andrews, Abner, married Mary 
Williams, a daughter of his neighbor, George Williams, about the 
year 1750, and had three children, one of whom, John, was born 
in 1754. He married first a Miss Reaves, but she dying, he 
subsequently located in Pitt County, where he married Elizabeth 
Bell, a widow, a daughter of Major Jonas Johnston, a hero of the 
Revolution, who fell at Stono; and by her he had two sons, 



46 NORTH CAROLINA 

William J. and Abner J., and two daughters. Young William J. 
Andrews, after the death of his father, passed his youth at Wood- 
bourne, and received his education there and at Palmyra, in Martin 
County, and located at Old Sparta, in Edgecombe, where he 
engaged in business as a merchant. At Shocco Springs, the 
fashionable resort of Eastern and Middle Carolina, he met Vir- 
ginia Hawkins, a daughter of Colonel John D. Hawkins, and on 
May 9, 1833, they were married. Mr. Andrews continued to 
reside in Edgecombe until about 1840, when he removed to Frank- 
lin, and two miles west of Franklinton the subject of this sketch 
was bom ; but shortly afterward Mr. Andrews moved to Hender- 
son, where he soon died, and the children were raised by their 
maternal grandparents. Colonel and Mrs. John D. Hawkins. 

Through his mother, Colonel Andrews is a descendant of the 
famous Hawkins family, whose patriotic deeds are blazoned in 
English history as well as in the annals of the Southern States. 
Sir John Hawkins, the renowned admiral, was one of Queen 
Elizabeth's most valiant captains in the destruction of the Spanish 
Armada. One of his descendants, Philemon, came to Virginia 
in 1715, dying in Gloucester County ten years later. His second 
son, of the same name, removed to Bute County, in North Caro- 
lina, and soon became a man of prominence, his home being a seat 
of elegant hospitality, and he being a leading patriot during the 
Revolutionary War. His son Benjamin, because of his pro- 
ficiency in modern languages, served at Washington's headquarters 
as an interpreter for the French officers on his staff. He was 
also a member of the Continental Congress, and he and Sam 
Johnston were the first senators chosen to represent the State in 
the United States Senate ; and he held many other important 
positions. Another son was Colonel John Hawkins, who married 
a sister of Hon. Nathaniel Macon ; and their eldest son, Philemon, 
married Lucy Davis, one of whose sons was Governor William 
Hawkins, the war governor during the period of the second war 
with Great Britain. Of their daughters, Eleanor married Sher- 
wood Haywood; Delia married Hon. George E. Badger; Ann, 
William P. Little; Lucy, Louis D. Henry; and Sarah, Colonel 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 47 

William Polk, one of her sons being Bishop Polk, who was also 
a general during the Confederate War. 

The eldest son of Philemon and Lucy Hawkins was Colonel 
John D. Hawkins, a graduate of the University of North Carolina, 
and for fifty years a trustee of that institution. He was a lawyer 
and planter and prominent as a political leader. He married 
Miss Jane A. Boyd, and among their sons were General P. B. 
Hawkins, Dr. Alexander B. Hawkins, and Dr. William J. 
Hawkins, for many years the president of the Raleigh and Gaston 
Railroad Co. and the president of the Citizens' National Bank; 
and among their daughters was Virginia, who married William J. 
Andrews of Edgecombe County, and became the mother of the 
subject of this sketch. 

In childhood. Colonel Andrews enjoyed all the freedom of 
•country life with its pastimes and pleasures, and developed into 
a strong and healthy boy. He was educated at the Henderson 
Male Academy, and being well advanced, in January, 1859, at 
the age of seventeen, he was employed as a clerk by his uncle. 
General P. B. Hawkins, who had a large contract for building 
a part of the Old Blue Ridge Railroad, and whose business 
centered in Pendleton, South Carolina. The Blue Ridge Railroad 
Company had been formed with a view of constructing a trunk 
line through what is known as Rabun Gap, which marks the lines 
between the States of Georgia and North Carolina, and the course 
of the Little Tennessee River was a more practicable route for a 
railroad to the West than that adopted earlier by the Louisville, 
Cincinnati and Charleston Railroad Company. The contemplated 
route was from Anderson Court House via Walhalla, South Caro- 
lina; Franklin, North Carolina; and Knoxville, Tennessee, on to 
Cincinnati. But after two millions and a half had been spent in 
the construction of the line, the enterprise was abandoned; how- 
ever, in 1861 the road was built to Walhalla. 

After six months' service as clerk, young Andrews was pro- 
moted and made superintendent and purchasing agent by General 
Hawkins, and held that important and responsible position until 
the latter part of i860, when the contract being finished, he 



48 NORTH CAROLINA 

returned to North Carolina. While engaged on this work, his 
energy, ability, faithfulness and loyalty were so conspicuous that 
offers were made to him of other positions, which were declined, 
as he preferred to continue and finish the construction he had 
undertaken. It thus appears that at the early age of seventeen 
Colonel Andrews manifested great capacity and a peculiar fitness 
for railroad construction and management, and that he then gave 
evidence of those capabilities which have since so highly dis- 
tinguished him. 

Being at home when the war broke out in the spring of 1861, 
he responded to the call of the State and enlisted as a Confederate 
soldier. On the loth day of May, 1861, he was appointed Second 
Lieutenant of Company E, First North Carolina Cavalry (Ninth 
North Carolina State troops). Colonel Robert Ransom command- 
ing ; and on September 23d of the same year he was promoted to 
First Lieutenant and transferred to Company B. He accom- 
panied his regiment to Virginia, and did duty at Manassas ; one 
of their early engagements being near the village of Vienna, 
fifteen miles from Alexandria. When in December the first 
cavalry brigade was formed. General J. E. B. Stuart being the 
brigadier, the regiment was placed in that brigade; but in the 
spring of 1862, Eastern North Carolina being invaded by the 
Federal troops of Burnside's expedition, it was ordered to the 
protection of the eastern counties, and took position near Kinston, 
remaining in that vicinity until about the middle of June, 
when it was directed to return to Richmond, then threatened by 
McClellan. 

On the way to Weldon, Captain Whitaker of Company B being 
temporarily absent, and Lieutenant Andrews having the command, 
information was received that three Federal gunboats had passed 
Jamesville on their way to destroy the railroad bridge at Weldon. 
Lieutenant Andrews hastily led his company to Poplar Point, about 
ten miles from Williamston, where he stationed a detachment, 
while he conducted the remainder to Rainbow Banks, afterward 
known as Fort Branch, two miles east of Hamilton, and there he 
awaited the approach of the gunboats. The leading gunboat, 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 49 

under the command of Lieutenant Flusser, notwithstanding the 
rapid fire of the cavalry, successfully passed and landed one hun- 
dred and twenty-five marines and two pieces of artillery at Hamil- 
ton, but proceeded no further ; and on its return it was again so 
vigorously attacked that the Federal expedition was abandoned 
without accomplishing any result. The activity, energy and good 
judgment of Lieutenant Andrews in this affair gave promise of 
his becoming a most enterprising and excellent cavalry officer, 
and it is the only instance recalled of a cavalry company success- 
fully resisting and driving back a force of gunboats. On the 
1 2th of July following this engagement. Lieutenant Andrews was 
promoted to the captaincy of his company, and with the regiment 
he participated in all the cavalry tnovements around Richmond 
and in the Maryland campaign, culminating in the capture of 
Harper's Ferry and ending at the battle of Sharpsburg. 

He accompanied Stuart in his raid around McClellan's army on 
the 9th of October, the command penetrating as far as Chambers- 
burg, and bringing out more than a thousand led horses, and on 
that expedition the regiment performed much conspicuous service. 
During that autumn and winter the regiment was in many engage- 
ments, and it fought single-handed, under Colonel Baker, the. hot 
action at Kelly's Ford ; and it was in the thickest of the fight and 
the longest on the field at the great battle of Brandy Station, 
Major McClellan, in his "Life of Stuart," making special mention 
of the splendid work done by it on that occasion. 

Through all these perils, Captain Andrews fortunately passed 
without injury, though he had his horse killed under him at 
Upperville. He was with Stuart in his detour around Meade's 
army in the Gettysburg campaign, the regiment occupying Carlyle, 
Pennsylvania, and participating in more than a dozen actions. 
After the return to Virginia, it was in the hard fight at Jack's 
Shop, on the 22d of September, 1863, Company B being in the 
advance. Here, while gallantly cheering on his men. Captain 
Andrews fell, shot through the lung, the ball striking the spinal 
column and removing a piece of the bone. The wound at first 
was thought mortal, and a correspondent writing at the time to 



so NORTH CAROLINA 

the Fayetteville Observer said: "No braver or better man has 
fallen during the war. He was universally beloved by all." But 
fortunately Captain Andrews did not die, although long confined 
to the hospital. Anxious to be with his command, while still very 
weak and having hemorrhages, he sought the camp, but was 
compelled by his physical condition to return to the hospital. On 
two other occasions he attempted to resume service with his com- 
pany, but his wound incapacitated him for active duty, and it 
becoming obvious that he could not perform his duty as captain, 
he abided by the advice of the surgeons, and in justice to his 
subordinate officers, was retired in the fall of 1864. His company, 
being a part of Stuart's famous cavalry, shared in all the hard- 
ships and dangers of that historic corps, and Captain Andrews 
so bore himself as to have been conspicuous for his gallant con- 
duct on every field of battle. 

In December, 1861, Colonel Robert Ransom desired to execute 
a very dangerous raid, and ordered a detail of two hundred picked 
men and selected officers. Lieutenant Andrews learning of this 
detail, asked the adjutant to select him as one of the lieutenants. 
Colonel Ransom overhearing the conversation, lectured him on 
volunteering to place himself in danger, saying: "Having confi- 
dence in your ability and soldierly qualifications, you are one of 
the first I ordered put upon the detail, but if I had not selected you, 
I would not now yield to your request. Should you be wounded 
or killed in the line of duty, having been detailed, it would be the 
fortune of war, but no one should voluntarily seek to imperil his 
life." Colonel Andrews has always remembered this advice, and 
has acted upon it throughout his career. 

It is noteworthy that during his connection with the army of 
Northern Virginia his service was mostly along the line of the 
old Orange and Alexandria Railroad, running from Alexandria 
to Lynchburg, and little did the young officer then think that in 
the years to come he would be the president of that very line, 
as well as the first vice-president of the great system stretching 
from Washington City to the Mississippi River with its branches 
and controlled roads comprising nearly 9000 miles. 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 51 

It was one of the characteristics of Captain Andrews as an 
officer to maintain the strictest discipline, he having been trained 
by Colonel Robert Ransom, and his early experience in managing 
men leading to the same result ; but when off duty he treated his 
comrades as associates, and his subordinates always found him easy 
of approach and willing at all times to hear suggestions and 
complaints. These characteristics, formed during his army service, 
have abided with him in after life ; and while no man is more strict 
in his own performance of duty and in requiring the full perform- 
ance of duties by his subordinates, yet he is noted for his patient 
hearing of every grievance that is brought to his attention, and he 
has followed what may be called the Golden Rule of "Never 
putting any one in a position he would be unwilling to occupy 
himself under similar circumstances." 

Having been paroled on the surrender of Johnston's army at 
Greensboro, he returned home with health still impaired, the 
hemorrhages from his wound continuing, and with only two horses 
and two silver dollars as his worldly possessions. The war had 
swept away what little property that belonged to the family, and 
as several sisters and a younger brother were dependent on him, 
he realized the necessity of some immediate employment ; and with 
the energy and enterprising spirit which he has always manifested, 
he turned from the disastrous past to the dubious and uncertain 
future. He had noticed that because the railroad bridges at 
Weldon and Gaston had been destroyed the passengers were trans- 
ferred across the Roanoke in an ordinary flat-bottomed ferry boat, 
and after a careful investigation he concluded that profitable em- 
ployment might be obtained by undertaking the transfer of passen- 
gers, freight, baggage and mail across the river. He formulated 
a proposition to that end, which was accepted by the several rail- 
road companies, and building a log house near Gaston, he remained 
there directing the work of transferring freight and passengers 
until May, 1866, when the new bridge at Weldon was completed; 
and now whenever he happens to see a long batteau or a flat boat 
he says that "he always takes his hat off to boats of that kind, as 
they made him the first money he had after the war." 



52 NORTH CAROLINA 

When the necessity for his services in that connection had 
ceased, Captain Andrews engaged in business at Henderson until 
July, 1867, when he received a telegram from one of the directors 
of the Raleigh and Gaston Railroad informing him that he had 
been chosen superintendent of that road, and asking if he would 
accept it. After a conference with the directors, he accepted the 
position, and was soon appointed general superintendent. The 
next year he was elected also superintendent of the Chatham 
Railroad, later known as the Raleigh and Augusta Air Line, and 
now a part of the Seaboard Air Line, and under his supervision 
fifty-six miles of that road were constructed. 

In 1871, the Richmond and Danville Railroad Co. secured a 
lease of the North Carolina Railroad, running from Charlotte to 
Goldsboro, for a term of thirty years, and the executive ofRcers 
of that company coming in contact with Captain Andrews and 
appreciating his unusual capacity to manage railroad property, 
offered him the superintendency of that line, which he accepted 
on November i, 1875, and left the service of the Raleigh and 
Gaston; and he held that position for eleven years, when he was 
promoted to the third vice-presidency of the Richmond and Dan- 
ville. From 1878 to 1880, at the solicitation of the governor of 
North Carolina, Governor Jarvis, he acted as superintendent of 
the Atlantic and North Carolina Railroad, which was virtually 
owned and controlled by the State, and he sought to operate it in 
conjunction with the North Carolina Railroad, making a through; 
line from the mountains to the sea. 

In 1881, the Western North Carolina Railroad, which was also- 
virtuall}' owned by the State, was, under an act passed at a special 
session of the legislature, sold to a syndicate of New York capital- 
ists composed of William J. Best, William R. Grace, J. Nelson 
Tappin and James D. Fish, under a contract which provided for 
reimbursing the State for money expended for the purchase of the- 
road in 1875 and subsequent construction, amounting in the aggre- 
gate to $1,400,000, for the payment of all convict labor on the 
road, and for the completion of the two branches of the great- 
work to Paint Rock and to Murphy. The Best syndicate failed 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 53 

in the performance of their contract, and sold to Messrs. Clyde, 
Buford & Logan, who bought in the interest of the Richmond and 
Danville Railroad, and in 1881 Colonel Andrews was elected presi- 
dent of the company for the purpose of completing the road from 
Old Fort to the two termini as required. The construction of 
this line was fraught with many troubles and difficulties, both 
political and financial, and necessitated a great deal of legislation 
for several years ; and to the indomitable will and energy and good 
faith of Colonel Andrews the State of North Carolina is indebted 
for the completion of this important line through the mountains, 
which has been of incalculable advantage to the State. Indeed, 
at one time the Richmond and Danville Railroad Company with- 
drew its support and financial backing, as the completion of the 
branch to Murphy seemed a penalty out of proportion to the 
benefit that would accrue from the construction of the road to the 
Tennessee line. Colonel Andrews, however, having entered upon 
the work, would not agree to its being stopped, and as he had 
pledged himself to the State and to the legislature that he would 
finish it if certain legislation were adopted and certain convict 
labor furnished, he personally assumed large liabilities to continue 
it, and exerted all his influence to persuade the Richmond and 
Danville Railroad Company to again undertake its construction. 
With much difficulty he accomplished his purpose, and the Rich- 
mond and Danville reluctantly consented to resume the work, and 
relieved him of the personal obligations he had assumed. 

Under his administration, the Western North Carolina paid in 
full all the debt due to the State under the Best contract, and on 
one occasion made a single payment of $600,000, which relieved 
the State from the necessity of levying any public tax that year. 
The completion of this line despite the almost insurmountable 
difficulties that attended it is only another evidence of those 
characteristics which Colonel Andrews displayed in his earlier days 
and during his career as a Confederate officer; and the road has 
proved of inestimable value to the State, and particularly to the 
mountain section, which has been developed much beyond the 
wildest conceptions ; and of itself it is a monument that will stand 



54 NORTH CAROLINA 

forever to the fame of this enterprising, energetic and competent 
railroad manager. 

Two years later the Richmond and Danville, recognizing Colonel 
Andrews's great ability and masterful capacity, made him assistant 
to the president, which position he occupied until 1886, when he 
became third vice-president ; and three years later he was appointed 
second vice-president, with a larger scope of importatit duties, and 
he continued to hold that position until 1892, when the company, 
becoming involved, passed into the hands of receivers. But 
Colonel Andrews's management had been so satisfactory and his 
administrative ability was so highly appreciated that the receivers 
appointed him their general agent, and continued him in the 
management of the property until the Southern Railway Company, 
which was organized in June, 1894, purchased all the lines for- 
merly known as the Richmond and Danville Railroad ; and at the 
first meeting of the directors of the new company he was elected 
second vice-president, and the next year he was promoted to the 
position of first vice-president; and 'since then he has held the 
next to the highest official position in the Southern Railway Com- 
pany, which now operates nearly 9000 miles of railroad. 

Notwithstanding the many changes in the ownership of the 
Richmond and Danville Railroad, and in the directory, and in the 
executive head, and the subsequent reorganization of the property 
into the great Southern Railway system. Colonel Andrews has 
always been retained in an executive capacity, and each succeeding 
change has brought him ample recognition of his fine abilities for 
management. Promotion followed promotion, until now for ten 
years he has held the highest office in the company, except alone 
the presidency, and his successful career is the highest proof of 
his great excellence, and attests his unsurpassed business capacity. 
In addition to his other offices and duties. Colonel Andrews has 
been president of the Charlotte, Columbia and Augusta Railroad 
Company, of the Columbia and Greenville, the Virginia Midland, 
the Northwestern North Carolina, the Oxford and Clarksville, the 
Oxford and Henderson, the Atlantic, Tennessee and Ohio, the 
Statesville and Western and the Piedmont Railroad Company, all 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 55 

of which were in 1894 reorganized and brought into the Southern 
Railway system. At present he is president of the Southern Rail- 
way, Carolina division, which comprises what was at one time the 
old South Carolina Railroad, the Spartanburg, Union and Colum- 
bia, the Asheville and Spartanburg, the South Carolina and 
Georgia Extension Company, with its road from Camden to Marion, 
North Carolina; the North Carolina Midland, the High Point, 
Randleman, Asheboro and Southern, the Atlantic and Yadkin, the 
Elberton Air Line, the Hartwell, the Roswell, the Yadkin, the 
Charlottesville and Rapidan, the Carolina and Tennessee South- 
ern, the Tennessee and Carolina Southern, the Ensley Southern 
and the Warrior Southern ; all of which are independent railroad 
companies, although they are operated as a part of the Southern 
system. Under his management many of these roads were pro- 
jected and constructed, while others have been greatly improved, 
and the whole system has, with a vast outlay and unremitting 
care, been brought up to the highest state of efficiency; and so 
great has been the development of traffic under his manage- 
ment that a large portion of the through line is being laid in 
double track as being absolutely necessary for prompt trans- 
portation. 

Indeed, no other man in the South, if there be any in the Union, 
has been identified with the management of so many railroad com- 
panies and has such a multiplicity of onerous duties to perform. 
To properly discharge them has severely taxed his physical ability, 
and only a man of his strong constitution, his unerring judgment, 
his evenness of temper and self-control could have borne up under 
the oppressive and exacting burden; but by close application he 
has been able not only to perform every service required of him, 
but also to render his connection with the great property com- 
mitted to his management of inestimable advantage to the public 
as well as to the owners. By his careful and intelligent direction, 
the territory of the South contributory to the Southern system 
has been greatly benefited and its varied resources largely devel- 
oped, and while as a result of his work all of the Southern States 
east of the Mississippi have shared in the common improvement, 



S6 NORTH CAROLINA 

in particular Central and Western North Carolina have felt the 
benefit of his patriotic labors. 

Besides his railroad operations, Colonel Andrews is a director 
of the Sloss-Sheffield Steel and Iron Company of Birmingham, 
Alabama, one of the largest coal and iron producing companies of 
the country, and he was one of the organizers of the Citizens' 
National Bank of Raleigh, and has been a director continuously 
since its organization in 1871, and has long been the vice-president 
of the institution. The career of this bank has been a phenomenal 
success, and is another evidence of the good judgment and high 
ability of Colonel Andrews, whose influence has always largely 
controlled its operations. 

Colonel Andrews has never sought political office, preferring to 
devote himself to the management of the railroad committed to his 
care, and finding satisfaction in building up the Southern country, 
and especially the undeveloped regions of Western North Caro- 
lina. At one time, however, he was a member of the Board of 
Aldermen at Henderson, and also of the city of Raleigh, and he 
served as an aide-de-camp with the rank of colonel on the staff 
of Governor Vance, and also on the staflf of Governor Jarvis. 
In 1886, President Cleveland appointed him a commissioner, as a 
representative of the United States Government, to examine part 
of the North Pacific Railroad and to make a report on the con- 
dition and value of that property. This appointment was con- 
ferred on Colonel Andrews because of his long experience in 
railroad construction and operation, the duties to be discharged 
requiring not only this practical knowledge, but high integrity 
and determination and decision of character. During the admin- 
istration of Governor Fowle, he was nominated by the governor 
and appointed by the President as one of the State commissioners 
to the Columbian Exposition at Chicago, and upon the organiza- 
tion of the National Committee in 1890, he became fifth vice- 
president ; and at its close he was selected as one of the Committee 
of Awards and a member of the Executive Committee appointed to 
wind up the affairs of the exposition. These positions, outside 
of his regular work, came to him without solicitation, and being so 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 57 

important in their nature, Colonel Andrews did not choose to 
decline them. 

As a patriotic North Carolinian, he has also served as a trustee 
of the University of North Carolina since 1885, and he is a member 
of the Executive Committee and also of the Finance Committee. 
While broad-minded in his political opinions, and viewing public 
questions from a national standpoint, entirely free from sectional- 
ism. Colonel Andrews is devotedly attached to Confederate mem- 
ories and to the old soldiers who were associated with him during 
the trying ordeal of the war between the States, and he has con- 
stantly sought to render them such service as he could. He was 
one of the original organizers of the Soldiers' Home established 
at Raleigh, and has taken a great interest in its enlargement and 
management, and is now president and chairman of the board of 
directors. 

Colonel Andrews's great success in life has been achieved by 
unremitting exertion and good judgment. Frankness of speech 
and directness of action are among his strongest personal char- 
acteristics. His manner is always courteous and considerate, 
straightforward and frank. He rarely gives advice unasked, nor 
does he offer his opinion unnecessarily, but in matters of business 
or policy where he is concerned he expresses himself with open- 
ness and decision. He is always willing to consider the reasons 
of others, and if his own ideas are different, he listens with 
attention, and does not adhere unreasonably to his preconceived 
opinions. Not willing to submit to an injustice himself, if in his 
intercourse with the public or with an individual he does that 
which might work an injustice to another, he is prompt to take 
all steps possible to correct it ; and notwithstanding the many hard 
knocks he has received in his official career, he prefers to concede 
to every one honesty of purpose and integrity of action. 

In his private life he is kindly, hospitable and generous, and 
although making no display of his charities, it rarely happens that 
any deserving object appeals to him in vain; and above all, he is 
constant in his friendships, strong in antagonism if antagonism 
comes, but a true friend to those admitted to his friendship. He 



S8 NORTH CAROLINA 

has always been a close student of human nature, and forms 
his opinions of those with whom he has dealings promptly, rarely 
making a mistake in his judgment. Indeed, his great success in 
managing men and conducting affairs has largely been due to 
his unerring ability to select proper men for the particular class 
of work he desires to perform, and he accords to those who work 
with him or under him their proper share in the success of his 
undertakings, giving to others due credit and rarely assuming 
credit for himself. 

Colonel Andrews is a communicant of the Protestant Episcopal 
Church, and has long been connected with the Church of the 
Good Shepherd at Raleigh, and toward its support and main- 
tenance he has been a liberal contributor. He is also a leading 
spirit in the Capital Club at Raleigh, and has done much to 
maintain that social organization at the State capital. He is a 
Master Mason, and a Royal Arch Mason, and Knight Templar, 
and a Shriner. His political affiliations are with the Democratic 
Party, in which he has long exerted a large influence because of 
his personal abilities, his numerous friends and the great inter- 
ests in the State which he controls. 

Being asked for some suggestion that might be helpful to the 
young men of the nation, he says: "From my experience and 
observation, to be successful and attain a position in society, one 
must above all things be honorable in his dealings with every one. 
He should be temperate in all things, and particularly so in the 
use of intoxicating beverages. Adopt the rule of doing unto 
others as one would be done by ; and never put aside for to-morrow 
what should be done to-day. Be loyal to his employer, and 
though it may at times seem that his devotion to his work and 
loyalty to his employer are not recognized, yet be patient and the 
reward will be the fulfilment of his highest ideas." 

On the 1st day of September, 1869, Colonel Andrews was 
happily united in marriage to Miss Julia M. Johnston, a daughter 
of Colonel William and Mrs. Anna E. Johnston of Charlotte, a 
lady who is greatly esteemed and beloved by a large circle of 
admiring friends ; and to them have been born five children, all of 



ALEXANDER BOYD ANDREWS 59 

whom are now living. The oldest, William J. Andrews, is a lead- 
ing mechanical and electrical engineer, and president of the 
Raleigh Electric Company, and married Miss Augusta W. Ford 
of Covington, Kentucky. Alexander B. Andrews, Jr., is a prom- 
ising member of the North Carolina Bar, who has already done 
effective work. Their only daughter, Jane Hawkins, is happily 
married to a prominent cotton exporter of Montgomery, Alabama, 
William M. Marks. John H. Andrews is in the traffic depart- 
ment of the railway service, and Graham H. Andrews has begun 
active life in the Citizens' National Bank of Raleigh. 

S. A. Ashe. 






JOHN ARCHDALE 

CNTIL recent years little has been known and 
less written on the life and work of John Arch- 
dale, the Quaker governor-general of the undi- 
vided province of Carolina. This has been due 
to two causes : the paucity and scattered condi- 
tion of our early records and the overshadowing 
influence of William Penn. But what Penn did toward the 
organization of Pennsylvania and the upbuilding of his followers 
there, John Archdale did in the Carolinas. 

For two hundred years it was the fashion to parade North 
Carolina as the refuge for all persons oppressed by the church, 
and Quakers were cited as proof. It was left for the present 
generation to disprove these claims. Recent publications have 
shown beyond cavil that it was not religious oppression that 
brought the first settlers into the wilderness of North Carolina, 
but the Anglo-Saxon hunger for land, more land and better 
land. The Quakers themselves have never claimed that they first 
came as religious refugees. They know better. When Edmund- 
son and Fox visited Albemarle, in 1672, they found but a single 
Quaker family, but they made many converts; they were work- 
ing in fallow ground, and the people were open and tender ; they 
met with no opposition, for there was no organized church, and 
the State was liberal. The result was that when Edmundson 
came again, in 1676-77, he found Friends "finely settled." They 



JOHN ARCHDALE 6i 

were then organized, and began soon after to keep regular records, 
which have come down to us. During the decade 1680-90 there 
are indications that Friends were coming into the province from 
Virginia and perhaps from England. It is synchronous with this 
growth in the society that the name of John Archdale appears 
in the affairs of Carolina. 

The Archdale family has been traced back to 1520. In the 
reign of Elizabeth it was seated at Norton Hall, in Norfolk. In 
1604 Richard Archdale purchased the Loakes estate in Bucks, 
now known as Wycombe Abbey. In 1628 he purchased two other 
manors, and became, probably, the largest landholder in the 
parish. He had a son, Thomas, who was most probably the father 
of the subject of this sketch. 

Governor John Archdale was born in 1642 ; of his early life 
we know nothing. His first connection with American affairs was 
in 1664, when he came out as agent of Governor Gorges of Maine. 
In that year. Sir Robert Carr and Samuel Maverick came out as 
royal commissioners, with two letters from the king, one to the 
people of Maine, commanding them to submit to Gorges ; the 
other was to the governm.ent of Massachusetts, commanding them 
to surrender Maine to Gorges. Archdale seems to have carried 
this order from Gorges to Massachusetts. That government de- 
murred, and Archdale appealed to the king's commissioners ; 
Massachusetts yielded, however, for the time. In 1672 Archdale 
was making reports on the matter to the English authorities. 

He seems to have returned to England in 1666, and for the 
next fifteen years we know little of his history. He probably 
lived at his country estate, and is said to have been the "chief 
gentleman of the village." He tells us that he was "convinced 
and separated" from his father's house by the preaching of George 
Fox, probably between 1673 and 1681, but it seems that he alone 
of his family accepted the doctrines of the Friends. 

It is probable that this convincement brought him to take an 
interest in the affairs of Carolina as a possible refuge for the 
persecuted English Quakers. He first appears in the records of 
Carolina on March 26, 1681. For the next twenty years it is 



62 NORTH CAROLINA 

certain that no other man exerted as much influence for good 
on the development and growth of the infant commonwealths; 
no other man was of equal importance in organizing and directing 
the Society of Friends, at that time the only organized religious 
body in the northern settlement. He became connected with 
Carolina by purchasing, in 1681, the share which had belonged to 
Sir John Berkeley. It was recorded in the name of his son, 
Thomas Archdale, a minor. The Wheeler MSS. say that John 
Archdale was chief justice of Carolina in 1681 ; if this is true it 
was probably only one of his official titles as a proprietor. There 
is no evidence that he ever performed such duties within the 
colony. He seems to have been preparing to come out to Caro- 
lina in 1682, and we know from instructions to Sothel that he was 
in Albemarle on December 14, 1683, or earlier. Again, in Feb- 
ruary, 1685, the proprietors write Sothel about Archdale, and 
from his own letters we know that he was there in March, 1686. 
In 1685 and 1686, by virtue of his proprietorship, he acted as 
governor of Albemarle during the. absence of Sothel. We may 
conclude that he was in Carolina about three years, between 
1682 and 1686, and probably spent most of his time in Albe- 
marle. He says, in 1705, that he had spent five years in Carolina 
in all, and the visit of 1695-1697 did not cover more than two 
years. 

From 1686 to 1694 he does not seem to have been prominent 
in Carolina affairs, but in the latter year his character and stand- 
ing again brought him to the front. In 1694 (August 31st) he 
was appointed governor-general of Carolina to succeed Thomas 
Smith, with the express hope that he would be able to heal the 
disturbances in South Carolina. This trouble had arisen through 
the popular ferment about the tenure of lands, the payment of 
quit rents, the naturalization of Huguenots, and the recent annul- 
ment by the proprietors of the laws of Ludwell's parliament relat- 
ing to juries and the election of representatives. Archdale was 
given almost unlimited powers. He could sell, let, or escheat 
lands, appoint deputy governors in both provinces, make and 
alter laws. His powers were so great that the proprietors were 



JOHN ARCHDALE 63 

careful to say that his case should not be taken as a precedent 
for future governors. 

Archdale left England on this difficult mission in December, 

1694. He arrived in North Carolina in June, 1695, found Thomas 
Harvey acting as governor, confirmed him in his office, and passed 
on to Charleston; assumed the government there on August 17, 

1695, and inaugurated a wide and prudent administration. He 
found a keen spirit of hostility to the French refugees, and thought 
it best to summon his first parliament from the English inhabitants 
only ; rents were remitted ; arrears might be paid in money or com- 
modities ; the price of lands was reduced : a board of arbitration 
was established to settle disputes between whites and Indians, and 
friendly relations were maintained with the Spaniards in Florida. 
Under his quieting administration the bickerings of the colony 
became less violent, and under his sticcessor acts of naturalization 
and liberty of conscience were passed. He stood between the 
extremes in their various quarrels, secured an act exempting Quak- 
ers from military service, and later he steadily opposed the church 
acts of 1704 and 1705. 

Toward the close of 1696 Archdale left South Carolina on his 
return to England. He carried with him the thanks of the house 
of representatives to the proprietors for sending them such a suc- 
cessful governor. He visited Albemarle on his way and traveled 
through that settlement during the winter of 1696-97. He was 
no less highly esteemed in Albemarle than in South Carolina, 
for in an address to the proporietors by the house of representa- 
tives of the northern colony, it is said that his "greatest care is to 
make peace and plenty flow amongst us" (February, 1696-97). 
Archdale left Albemarle that spring and saw America no more. 

His work was probably more permanent in the northern than 
in the southern colony. In Albemarle the good work inaugurated 
by him was continued under Harvey ; the colonists enjoyed peace 
within and without, and their general progress was steadily up- 
ward. He was sagacious, prudent and moderate, and his faith 
tended to encourage religion and morality. During his rule the 
Quakers received an impetus in Albemarle that carried them sue- 



64 NORTH CAROLINA 

cessfully through the troublous times of the next twenty years. 
They began to appear more frequently as holders of office. The 
council, the courts and the Assembly showed a preponderance of 
Quaker influence. There was a material reward for being a 
Quaker, and as they were till 1701 the only organized body of 
Christians, and so far as known the only body with established 
places of worship, they drew into their ranks no small part of the 
religiously inclined from the population at large. 

Archdale seems to have thought of settling in North Carolina 
at the time of his first visit, for his family was apparently with 
him. He was elected to Parliament from Chipping Wycombe, in 
1698, and was the first Quaker to bear testimony there against the 
taking of oaths, and the vacated seat went to his brother Thomas. 
He again thought of coming to Carolina in 1705; was succeeded 
in the proprietorship by his son-in-law, John Dawson, or Danson, 
April 9, 1709, and died somewhat later than 171 5. Joseph Blake, 
deputy governor of South Carolina in 1695, was probably a 
nephew ; while Thomas Cary, deputy governor of North Carolina, 
I705"7> and in 1708-10, was either his stepson or his son- 
in-law. His son-in-law, Dawson, does not appear to have been 
in Carolina. Archdale's daughter Annie, who died in 1731, mar- 
ried, in 1688, Emanuel Lowe of Pasquotank. Lowe died in 1727; 
his daughter Annie married Thomas Pendleton; Annie Letitia 
Pendleton married Demsey Connor of Pasquotank (d. c. January, 
1754) ; their son, Demsey Connor, Jr., was a man of some prom- 
inence in the Revolution. He married Nancy Blount, and their 
daughter, Frances Clark Pollock, who married as a second hus- 
band William Hill, secretary of State, 181 1-57, was, as far as 
known, the last living descendant of Archdale in America. There 
are English representatives living in Norfolk County, England. 

In 1707 Archdale published in London a "Description of Caro- 
lina." It deals almost exclusively with South Carolina. It is 
hardly a description ; it is rather a memoir, rambling, discursive, 
defensive. It has little historical interest. A volume of his manu- 
script papers of more historical value than the "Description" be- 
longs to the estate of the late Charles Roberts of Philadelphia. 



JOHN ARCHDALE 



65 



The present sketch is made up entirely from the fourth chapter 
of my "Southern Quakers and Slavery," and from an article on 
John Archdale and some of his descendants, published by myself 
in the Magazine of American History, February, 1893. In these 
articles his career as far as known will be found in detail. 

Archdale's memory is preserved in North Carolina in the name 
of one of the halls of Guilford College, known as the Archdale 
Hall, and in a little village in Randolph County, formerly known 
as Bush Hill. 

Stephen B. Weeks. 





SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE 




^^J^^f^^^^^N all ages and in all countries there have been 
iL^iSV\Aj«5!Sj ^jjjg j^gj^^ ^gii equipped and wise, who were not 
so prominent as to become historic. There is 
no little of seeming accident and result of for- 
V«^^^^?^fe^ tuitous combinations of circumstances entering 
^aTj^^^^^:^ into political successes and aggressive leader- 
ship. The greatest, even the most useful and judicious, men, do 
not invariably reach the front and achieve the highest possible 
fame. Clay, Calhoun, and Webster did not attain to the Presi- 
dency of our country, eminently and richly endowed as they were, 
and with such protracted service for their native land. There 
are in this hour as great, or greater, men at home as can be found 
in places of supposed honor and high public trust. I am about 
to write a character sketch of a North"" Carolinian who has never 
occupied high office, who, by reason of original endowment, actual 
accomplishments and thorough usefulness, has performed real ser- 
vice for the Democratic Party and the welfare of North Carolina 
in a time of political stress and peril that equals fully the services 
rendered by any contemporary official, alone excepting that puis- 
sant man of the people, Zebulon Baird Vance. I refer to Samuel 
A. Ashe, a citizen of commanding individuality, and one of the 
ablest and best equipped editors of the South in the last thirty 
years. He may not be so well known as such, but that will not 
affect the truth of the statement nor in any way diminish his unmis- 



SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE 67 

takable merits. He is a North Carolinian of the purest type 
and deserves most richly to hold a front place among the genuine 
men of mark in our time and in our State. While Captain Ashe's 
chiefest reputation and most meritorious service are based on his 
editorial life, extending through many years, he has been a really 
powerful factor in political management even when not identified 
with a newspaper. He has long been a most useful, influential 
and judicious contributor to the press when not actually engaged 
in professional work as an editor. 

Samuel A. Ashe was born at Wrightsville Sound, eight miles 
from Wilmington, in New Hanover County, on the 13th of Sep- 
tember, 1840. He was a son of William Shepperd Ashe, of the 
Rocky Point family of that name, and his wife, Sarah Ann Green, 
who in the maternal line was a Grange. He is of distinguished 
ancestry in North Carolina, and but few families have furnished 
to the State so many men of superior merit and excellence of 
character. 

His parents had three sons and several daughters, among the 
latter being Miss Willie Ashe 'of Raleigh; of the former, James 
Dobbin died early; Major John Grange Ashe, educated at West 
Point, was a capable Confederate officer, serving with distinction 
with Lee, and with General Taylor in the Red River campaign. 
He married in 1861, and in 1865 moved to Texas, wherehe died in 
1867. 

Their second son is the subject of this sketch. He was a bright, 
promising boy. When a small lad his father resided on the old 
plantation at Rocky Point, originally settled by Edward Moseley. 
He was taught by private tutors, and attended the old field schools 
until the winter of 1849, when he spent six months at school in 
Macon, Georgia, and then attended Abbott's Academy at George- 
town, District of Columbia, and Rugby Academy at Washington, 
and the Oxford Academy at Maryland, until 1855, when he 
entered the Naval Academy at Annapolis. He had been thor- 
oughly taught, and at Annapolis, although one of the younger 
members of his class, he took the position as second in his class, 
and continued to be one of the star members until he resigned 



68 NORTH CAROLINA 

from the Academy in November, 1858, and returned to his father's 
home, then at Rocky Point. Here for two years he devoted himself 
to the close study of history and literature bearing on the pro- 
fession of law, reading Reeves's "History of the Common Law," 
Sharon Turner's "Anglo-Saxons," Robertson's "Charles the 
Fifth," Hallam's "Middle Ages and Constitutional History," and 
other such works, so that it is probable that no other young man 
in a century has come to the bar in North Carolina with the same 
equipment for the study of the law as he possessed. He began 
its careful study under Mr. William Ruffin, the eldest son of the 
eminent Chief Justice Ruffin, who outranks any one who ever 
sat on the Supreme Court Bench of North Carolina. His son 
William was endowed with great faculties, and is credited by 
some with having had even a higher legal mind than his very 
able father. When Fort Sumter was bombarded, Mr. Ashe re- 
turned to his home and offered his services to Major Whiting, 
who by courtesy had taken charge at Wilmington, and was 
appointed by him a lieutenant and assigned to duty at Fort Cas- 
well. The fort at that early date was entirely defenseless, and 
Lieutenant Ashe, under the direction of Captain F. L. Childs, 
was largely instrumental in putting it in condition for defense. 
Later the State authorities sent him an appointment in the corps 
of engineers and artillery, and he continued on duty under Cap- 
tain John C. Winder, on the lower Cape Fear, with some slight 
intermission until November. In August the State turned over 
her troops to the Confederacy, without making any provision for 
its engineer and artillery officers, still Lieutenant Ashe remained 
on duty without rank or pay until the Federal fleet, having passed 
the North Carolina coast, captured Beaufort, South Carolina, and 
his pressing work being then substantially finished, he went to 
the front in South Carolina, along with Colonel Radcliffe's regi- 
ment, and later enlisted as a private in Company I of that, then 
known as the Eighth Regiment, but later as the Eighteenth North 
Carolina Troops. In the early spring, however, the President 
sent him a commission in the regular army of the Confederate 
States, with an assignment to duty with Captain F. L. Childs, 



SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE 69 

then in command of the arsenal at Charleston. In June he ac- 
cepted an appointment as captain and adjutant-general on the 
staff of General Pender, and joined Pender's brigade and served 
with it in the campaign against Pope, being particularly men- 
tioned for conduct at the battle of Cedar Run, and he was very 
useful in the battle of Second Manassas. The night after that 
battle, however, he was taken prisoner and confined in the Old 
Capitol Prison at Washington for some weeks and then parolled. 
Returning home, he found Wilmington depopulated because of 
the yellow fever then raging there, and that his father had been 
killed by an accident. In November, having been exchanged, he 
was assigned to duty under his regular army commission on the 
staff of General Clingman, and the next summer, when the Fed- 
erals attacked Battery Wagner, he was assigned to duty as 
ordnance officer of that post. It was one of his duties during 
that memorable siege to repair at night the damages done by the 
incessant bombardment during the day. He often worked be- 
tween two and three hundred men all night in removing debris, 
replacing carriages and mounting new guns, so as to be ready 
for the next day's defense, being subjected all the while to 
fire from Coehorn mortars of the enemy. That siege was one 
of the most terrible experiences of the war. On the day the 
fort was abandoned, in obedience to orders from Richmond, he 
left Charleston and reported at Fayetteville, and was assigned to 
duty as assistant to the commanding officer of that great arsenal 
of construction — Colonel F. L. Childs, who from their first inter- 
course at Fort Caswell, in April, 1861, had the highest apprecia- 
ation of Captain Ashe's services. Although anxious to return to 
the field, the department would never consent to his leaving the 
work assigned him, and he remained at Fayetteville until the 
close of the war. 

His father's property having been swept away by the war, 
he began life absolutely without means and with a considerable 
family dependent upon him. 

In January, 1866, he was appointed conductor on a freight train 
on the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad, and after some months' 



70 NORTH CAROLINA 

experience was transferred to the passenger service, and then 
transferred to the sleeping-car service, and ran the first sleeping 
cars from Wilmington to West Point, in Georgia, a trip of two 
days and a night going and two days and a night returning. 
During that period he resumed the study of law, and retiring from 
the railroad service on the ist of December, 1866, he studied at 
home during that month and obtained his license, and began the 
practice in January, 1867, at Wilmington. At this critical time 
Commander A. T. Mahan, of United States Navy, who had been 
his classmate and intimate friend at the Naval School, wrote 
to him that he "had just returned from a long cruise, and had 
saved $500. If you have survived the war, you will need it. I 
would take it from you; you must take it from me." This aid 
enabled him to live until his practice began to pay. His business 
steadily grew and became lucrative. 

Deeply interested in the welfare of the people, he zealously 
co-operated with others in endeavoring to avert the horrible fate 
that then threatened them. It was his custom to make political 
speeches in every campaign, although he never expected to enter 
public life, since the county as well as the State was RepubHcan 
by a very large majority. However, at the election of 1870 the 
Republicans had two sets of candidates in the field, and the County 
Executive Committee determined to try and run in some Con- 
servatives between them. As a result of prudent management. 
Major McClammy was elected to the Senate and Captain Ashe 
to the House, his colleagues being a carpet-bagger, G. Z. French, 
and a negro named Mabson. It was at the time of the Kirke War, 
and the Conservatives obtained a majority in the legislature. 

In the House, Captain Ashe was a very active member — was 
chairman of the Finance Committee, a leading member of the 
Judiciary Committee, and also served on other important com- 
mittees. When Governor Holden was impeached, a dozen of the 
other leading members of the House sought the position of man- 
agers of that trial, and during its long continuance were with- 
drawn from the House, which threw Captain Ashe still more in 
the leadership, and he doubtless had more to do with the legis- 



SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE 71 

lation of that eventful and critical period than any other member. 
As chairman of the Finance Committee, he not only reformed the 
tax laws and contributed to bring order out of chaos and remedy 
the evils of a looted treasury, but formulated a proposition for the 
settlement of the State debt, which passed the House, but was 
not considered in the Senate, which had passed the ineffectual 
proposition of Senator J. M. Worth. Captain Ashe's measure was 
substantially the proposition that at a later period was adopted, 
under which the State debt has been happily settled. 

He married at Raleigh, in August, 1871, and began the practice 
of law there. He entered actively in the campaign of 1872, and 
in conjunction with John Spellman issued a campaign paper called 
Blasting Powder. 

In January, 1873, he entered into partnership with United 
States Senator Merrimon and Colonel Thomas Fuller, later a 
United States judge, which was a most agreeable association, and 
continued until July, 1879. It was considered the strongest law 
firm in the State. In 1874 he edited a daily paper called the 
Evening Crescent (founded by T. B. Kingsbury), which probably 
did more than any other one instrumentality in bringing about 
the redemption of the State, the Democratic majority in that year 
reaching over 12,000. He wrote most of the publications made by 
the Democratic Executive Committee, and in 1876 largely con- 
ducted the campaign, along with General Cox, who was the 
chairman of the committee ; and then he himself became chairman, 
and so continued until 1880. 

On the failure and sale of the Raleigh Observer in 1879, he was 
induced to purchase that paper and change his vocation in life. 
Two years later the Daily News was consolidated with his paper, 
the entire management being committed to him, and for some years 
the paper was prosperous. In 1885 he was appointed postmaster 
at Raleigh, and for four years filled that office with entire accept- 
ability. About that time his paper ceased to be profitable, and 
there being other competitors in the field, the News and Observer 
had a hard struggle to maintain itself; but it survived all its 
competitors, and eventually, in 1893, it obtained possession of its 



72 NORTH CAROLINA 

last competitor, the Chronicle, and Captain Ashe published the 
News-Observer-Chronicle. In the meantime, however, other gen- 
tlemen had become financially interested in the paper, which was 
in debt, and there then being a clear field, they thought that a 
good time to dispose of their property, and sold it out at a sacrifice. 
This ended his editorial career. He sought to return to the law, 
but after two years, not being able to re-establish himself in a 
lucrative practice, he accepted the position of cashier in the office 
of the collector of internal revenue, Hon. F. M. Simmons. At 
the end of his term he found employment in connection with a 
cotton manufacturing establishment at Willardville, which ceasing 
in 1904, he engaged in editing the sketches contained in this work. 
Captain Ashe, as editor, rendered extraordinary services to the 
Democracy and to the State at large. For some sixteen years 
he was an earnest, able and wise editor, and never flashed or failed 
for a day in his strong advocacy of the genuine, most necessary 
principles of the Democracy. He was not only true, but he was 
wise and full of foresight. His forecast and discretion, his judg- 
ment and ability, were of the best, for he not only stood four square 
by fundamentals, but he was true to the changing phases of minor 
principles that parties necessarily take on to meet passing demands 
and temporary exigencies. If he had been placed in high official 
position, he would have reflected honor upon himself as well as 
upon his native Carolina, and would have been as true, as wise, 
as useful and as able as he had shown himself to be in the editorial 
room, aiding the party of the people to victory after victory. As 
editor he commanded the attention of the leaders, and was not 
only the advocate of measures of importance suggested by others, 
but himself put in motion other important measures that were 
alike timely, judicious and most necessary. Governor Jarvis, who 
was a practical, efficient, able chief executive, under whose admin- 
istration North Carolina entered upon a glorious career of pro- 
gressive action and prosperity, has written that "Captain Ashe 
was really a part of his public life, and that he really owes much 
to him for the success he had in the public work that fell to his lot." 
The same could doubtless have been said by the other Democratic 



SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE T^ 

governors who succeeded Governor Jarvis. Assuredly, he was a 
great factor and an untiring worker in his wise, well-directed 
efforts to save the State from vicious and dangerous rule. As a 
resolute, eager, honest friend of humanity and of his own native 
State, he stood forth as the champion of the constitutional Demo- 
cratic government, seeking to perpetuate and guarantee liberty, to 
secure the peace, happiness and prosperity of the people, and to 
hand down in unbroken perpetuity the traditions, the convictions, 
the faith of the noble men who had gone before. In several times 
of doubt and danger since the great war he was a strong, unbend- 
ing sentinel upon the watch-tower, and while sounding alarms, 
offered from the treasury of his wisdom, tact, guidance and plans 
to save, and pointed the way to preserve the State from threat- 
ened injury. He did a great deal to crystallize the genuine, honest 
Democracy and keep it firm and true to well-known principles. 
In 1881, when "Liberalism," so called, sprang up and antagonized 
"County Government" so vigorously and pertinaciously, the able 
editor of the News and bserver stood fast, and but for his leader- 
ship it is probable that the important system would have then failed. 
At other periods in our history within the last quarter of a 
century there have indeed been perilous times. In 1891 there 
were serious conditions, when, under new ideas and doubtful prin- 
ciples, so many former Democrats turned away from their party 
to coalesce with men filled with political vagaries and deceptions. 
Captain Ashe then showed his ability and fidelity in a marked 
degree. In 1892 it was worse. The opposition was stronger, more 
aggressive, more carried away by theories and promises that de- 
luded and enticed. The times were filled with threatened omens. 
The fight was on with tremendous determination, and a bitter 
war was waged. Captain Ashe, as in other years, did his duty 
without hesitancy or fear. He showed himself a wise leader, a 
judicious interpreter, a master builder. In his controversy with 
Colonel Polk he bore himself with a force, a vigor, a consecration 
to the right that gave him a great triumph. So decided was his 
victory that one of his editorial contemporaries declared that "he 
deserves a monument." He sought sedulously, serenely, wisely. 



74 NORTH CAROLINA 

to aid the white men to retain control of the State. After he had 
left the editorial field, however, the Populists and Republicans 
fused, and for a time the grand old party of civilization and of 
sound principles was in a minority. In 1898 and 1900 he zealously 
and efficiently worked with Chairman Simmons, and aided to 
re-establish the Democratic Party in power. 

It was in 1897 that he broached the very important, crucial 
subject of a constitutional amendment, providing that after 1901 
no voter then coming of age should be allowed to register unless 
he could read and write. This proposition was not intended to 
deprive any one who had ever been admitted to suffrage of his 
right to vote, but it was intended, by providing an educational test, 
to stimulate a desire on the part of the illiterates to have their 
children educated. This proposition, however, was not acted on; 
but subsequently a constitutional amendment more far-reaching 
was proposed, and although he preferred his own, nevertheless he 
zealously advocated its adoption, and contributed largely to that 
end. His chief work has been on the line of building up, strength- 
ening and conserving the Democratic Party in the State, in 
rescuing the whites from negro rule, and in securing the control 
of public affairs to those people o'f North Carolina who were best 
fitted to preserve Anglo-Saxon civilization. He began his patri- 
otic work as far back as 1868, and extending through the years, 
it has been possibly more unremitting, constant, effective and 
beneficial to that end than have been the labors of any of his 
contemporaries. 

He had early in life become interested in State history, and was 
very helpful to Colonel Saunders in the preparation of the "Colo- 
nial Records" and to Judge Clark in the preparation of the "State 
Records." He has written many historical papers, and when in 
the post-office, having then the first leisure of a very laborious 
life, he, in conjunction with his sister, prepared a school history of 
the State, which, however, has never been published; and more 
lately he has written a larger history of North Carolina down 
to the Revolutionary period. He writes with precision, lucidity, 
propriety and discernment. He has been an active, faithful toiler 



SAMUEL A'COURT ASHE 75 

with his pen, always laborious and almost unceasingly engaged. 
Idleness has been no part of his life, and he has not been addicted 
to reading unprofitable books. He has been literally "instant in 
season and out of season." In those days of sorrow which fol- 
lowed the subjugation of the South, he read and studied religious 
works, and became a communicant of the Protestant Episcopal 
Church. He was a vestryman of St. John's Church at Wilming- 
ton and of Christ Church, Raleigh, for many years ; but is not so 
now. He married in 1871 Miss Hannah Emerson Willard of 
Raleigh, and has lived a very domestic life. He has eight children 
now living. 

Captain Ashe, in addition to historical and biographical essays, 
has frequently made literary addresses. One was particularly well 
praised, that on the "Press: the Defender of the Liberties of the 
People." In February, 1904, he delivered an address at Raleigh 
on General Lee that received high commendation, and he delivered 
the loth of May address at Wilmington, by the invitation of the 
ladies, and it was regarded as appropriate, patriotic, impressive 
and eloquent. He also delivered an address a day or two later, at 
the request of the Colonial Dames, at Old Brunswick Church, a 
few miles below Wilmington, that was of very superior literary 
and historical merit. It was much praised and highly relished. 

Among other literary work done by him in 1905 was an open 
letter to Hon. John G. Carlyle, concerning the special tax bonds 
which were repudiated by the State in March, 1870. This was 
said to be "the most important document of vital public interest 
that has been printed in North Carolina in many days." Governor 
Jarvis wrote "that he read it with infinite delight; that it was 
accurate and overwhelming." Its publication caused great inter- 
est in the other Southern States that had repudiated similar bonds ; 
and the Governor of North Carolina carried it to the Governor of 
New York and presented it as containing reasons why the State 
of New York should not accept donations of these repudiated 
securities. It has been justly considered as a great and valuable 
service to the people of North Carolina, and in a measure to the 
people of the Southern States. T. B. Kingsbury. 




CHARLES B. AYCOCK 




fF the men of North Carolina who have attained 
distinction since the close of the Confederate 
period, among the most prominent is Charles B. 
Aycock, the governor of the State for the term 
ending January, 1905. Unaided by adventitious 
circumstances, or by the glamour of a military 
record, he has steadily risen in the esteem of the people until he 
was called, with unusual unanimity, to the highest position in the 
commonwealth. Among the particular characteristics that com- 
mended him to public favor have been frankness of demeanor, 
sincerity and candor. Thus without effort he has retained all his 
early friends, and as his acquaintance widened his popularity 
extended, until his name became a household \yord in every section 
of the State. Public attention was first attracted to him because 
of his unusual powers as an orator, for he is endowed in a remark- 
able degree with brilliancy of conception and fervor of expression, 
while his sentiments are elevated, being founded in purity and 
truth, and he has been particularly happy in clothing them in 
elegant and choice language. Indeed, as a public speaker he has 
had few equals in North Carolina, and his addresses made in other 
States have established for him a fine reputation far beyond our 
borders. 

Governor Aycock was born on the 1st day of November, 1859, 
near Nahunta, now Fremont, in Wayne County, where his kins- 



CHARLES B. AYCOCK ^^ 

people, the Aycocks and Hooks, had for several generations been 
held in high esteem for their strength of character and sterling 
worth. 

His father, Benjamin Aycock, married Miss Serena Hooks, of 
the same vicinity, and was happy and fortunate in his family 
relations'. He was a farmer, and having inherited an excellent 
property, by his industry, despite the disasters incident to the 
war and the disorganization of labor, he made accumulations, while 
enjoying the substantial comforts of country life. 

He was a man of action rather than of words, thoughtful, 
painstaking and prudent, and being of excellent judgment and 
high integrity, he easily retained the confidence and respect which 
had for generations been accorded his kinspeople by a wide circle 
of friends. He was clerk of the Superior Court of Wayne, and 
on the resignation of William K. Lane, State senator, in the 
spring of 1863, he was elected to represent his county in the Senate. 
In that body he was distinguished for his patriotism. The legis- 
lature at that time was divided into two chief factions, one of 
whom sustained the war measures of the Confederate Government 
and the other was intent to find cause of hostile criticism and to 
embarrass the Confederate administration rather than to aid it. 
On every vote taken in the Senate on matters of this import, 
Aycock's name always led the list of those who sought to uphold 
the Confederate administration, and although that party was in 
a minority in the Senate as well as in the House, he never flinched 
in the performance of his full duty to the soldiers in the field and 
to those who were making such Herculean efforts to achieve 
Southern independence. At the session of May, 1864, he joined 
with Senators Pitchford and Holeman in making a majority report 
on that part of the governor's message which related to conscrip- 
tion and exemptions, which did him the highest credit and illus- 
trated his devotion to the Confederate cause. A majority of the 
senators did not sympathize with his ardent feeling, and it was 
thought to conciliate them. In his report Senator Aycock said : 
"Your committee most sincerely lament the necessity of con- 
scribing persons between seventeen and eighteen and forty-five 



78 NORTH CAROLINA 

and fifty years of age, but do not consider the present to be the 
proper time or place to decide upon the constitutionahty of that 
measure." Continuing, the report recommended that able-bodied 
men should not be unnecessarily employed by the railroad 
and the express companies, and "your committee are utterly 
unable to assign any valid reason for the exemption of militia 
or any kind of military officers who have no men to com- 
mand or of justices of the peace who have no judicial duties 
to discharge." 

But the majority of the Senate were of a different mind. In 
the report of the minority of the committee, which represented 
the views of the Senate, there was much learning about the king 
and the parliament and the constitution and "the gigantic power 
of conscribing the whole militia of a sovereign State and placing 
them in the regular army and sending them to distant lands to 
fight the battles of the Confederacy." "Such an assumption of 
power is wholly inconsistent with the vital and fundamental prin- 
ciples of our system of government and utterly subversive of all 
State authority." And so the minority report was based on 
"the single purpose of preserving constitutional principles, which 
lay at the very foundation of our system of government, and 
which cannot be abandoned without converting this Confederacy 
of free States into a consolidated military despotism," and it 
recommended the adoption of resolutions "that the acts of con- 
scription of the Confederate Congress, without the consent of 
the State, are unconstitutional," which was agreed to by a majority 
of the Senate. It was on such lines that the members of the 
legislature divided ; and the period of Mr. Aycock's service in that 
body was one calling for the display of courage, patriotism and 
high devotion, and he never failed in the performance of his 
duties to a struggling country and to the soldiers who were suffer- 
ing such terrible experiences in the campaigns in Virginia. As 
he said in his report : "Shall the noble-hearted men be suffered to 
call and die in vain, while a man is left at home who can or ought 
to render aid?" Such was his spirit and the spirit of those who 
co-operated with him in the Assembly; a spirit of lofty and 



CHARLES B. AYCOCK . 79 

ennobling patriotism, earnest and sincere in its purpose to achieve 
independence, and that the heroic sacrifices of our people should 
not be in vain. 

On his mother's side. Governor Aycock also inherited a title 
to popular confidence. Charles and David Hooks were men of 
mark in their day, the former having nearly a century ago served 
two terms in the Congress of the United States with great accept- 
ability. Raised on his father's farm, Charles Aycock was blessed 
with robust, vigorous health, and from early boyhood was habitu- 
ated to the usual labor of farm life, and he could plow a furrow 
as straight as any other young man in his neighborhood. He 
received his preparatory education at the high schools at Fremont, 
Wilson and Kinston, and graduated from the University of North 
Carolina in 1880. During the last year of his collegiate course 
he read law at that institution, and the following year, being 
admitted to the bar, he opened his law office at Goldsboro, among 
the people who were familiar with the merit and worth of his 
family connections. 

He had chosen the profession of the law not merely because 
it was an avenue to honorable position, but because his kins- 
people, discerning in him remarkable aptitude for that profession, 
urged him to adopt it. Their expectations were not disappointed ; 
he soon established himself in the respect and confidence of a large 
clientage, and quickly achieved distinction at a bar always remark- 
able for its fine lawyers. 

His first public employment had for its object the promotion of 
education among the people of his native county. Being solicited 
to take the position of county superintendent of public instruc- 
tion, he did not hesitate to accept it, and he gave an impulse to 
the educational movement in Wayne County that has borne very 
excellent fruits. 

Interested in public affairs, in 1888 he became a candidate for 
Presidential elector on the Democratic ticket, and his canvass of 
his district won him so many friends and admirers, and his fame 
as a campaign speaker became so extended, that in 1892 he was 
selected as one of the electors-at-large. During that campaign 



8o NORTH CAROLINA 

he made a more extended canvass, meeting the leader of the 
opposition, Senator Butler, in joint debate, and became recognized 
as one of the most brilliant orators of the State. After the election 
an appreciative people presented his name to President Cleve- 
land, who appointed him United States District Attorney for the 
Eastern District of North Carolina, which position he held with 
great acceptability until 1898. During all the political campaigns 
he performed his whole duty as a party man, and continued to 
grow in favor with the people; but especially was he a conspicu- 
ous figure in the hot political battle of 1898, when he was requested 
by the State chairman to meet Dr. Cyrus Thompson in a joint 
canvass, which he did so successfully and admirably as to win 
for himself unstinted applause. 

He had now attained such wide popularity that there was a 
general feeling in every part of the State that he should be 
selected as the Democratic candidate for governor, and at the 
succeeding State convention he was nominated for that office 
and was elected by a large majority. 

His course as governor was marked by an efficient discharge of 
every public duty, and year by year he has grown in public favor. 
In particular his administration will be memorable for the great 
educational campaign Governor Aycock, in connection with some 
of the leading educators of the State, inaugurated and has for four 
years maintained with a zeal and a fervor never before known in 
North Carolina. With great power he has spoken in nearly every 
county, awakening an interest in the cause of education that has 
already produced very beneficial results, and which it is hoped 
will in the end remove from the State the incubus of widespread 
illiteracy. 

Under his administration the penitentiary has been placed on a 
paying basis ; and within the limitation of appropriations he has 
greatly enlarged the field of usefulness of all the State institu- 
tions. He has been tireless in his endeavor to restrict the manu- 
facture and sale of liquor to towns and cities, and the fact that 
success has rewarded his efforts in this direction is attested by 
the prevalent feeling of security to life and property throughout 



CHARLES B. AYCOCK 8i 

the State — so essential to the development of the prosperity that 
has come in its wake. 

During his administration many perplexing questions arose 
challenging public attention, the first of which was a large and 
growing deficit in the public funds. There were divided councils 
as to the best manner to meet this condition and provide against 
its recurrence, but Governor Aycock and his advisers, aided by the 
Finance Committee of the General Assembly of 1902, met it 
boldly and wisely. There was framed a revenue act to increase 
the assessment of railroad property and equalizing the assessment 
of other property, which solved the problem without increasing the 
rate of taxation. Enough revenue has since been collected to pay 
the increased appropriation for education, the pensions for the 
Confederate soldiers, the care of the insane, and still leave a 
surplus in the State treasury. Judging by its fruits, the admin- 
istration of Governor Aycock has been an eminent success in those 
departments that called for the application of wise business prin- 
ciples no less than in the progress of the educational movement, 
which has invested it with a distinctive character. 

Although gentle and sympathetic in his disposition. Governor 
Aycock, when aroused by a righteous indignation, has given ample 
evidence of the highest civic courage and intrepidity. Most of his 
battles have been won in the forum of reason and by the art of 
persuasion, but in the summer of 1904 he manifested a spirit as 
unbending as iron in dealing with those who undertook to defy 
the sovereign power of the State. The story of the conspiracy 
against the State's interests in the Atlantic and North Carolina 
Railroad and how Governor Aycock met it is one of the most 
thrilling in the annals of the commonwealth. He upheld the honor 
of the State and crushed the conspirators to the wall ; but at last, 
when their designs had been thoroughly defeated and the honor 
of the State and her power vindicated, the governor was not 
indifferent to the appeals for mercy. 

The fine addresses that Governor Aycock delivered throughout 
the State in the cause of education and the brilliant reputation he 
has won as an orator led to his being invited to deliver some 



82 NORTH CAROLINA 

educational addresses in the State of Maine and elsewhere at the 
North; and the unusual spectacle was presented of the governor 
of North Carolina visiting the New England States and seeking 
to illuminate the minds of the New Englanders on the subject 
of educational advancement. His efforts in this direction were 
well received, and he was met by large and appreciative audiences. 
Also, during the campaign of 1904, he made political addresses 
at the instance of the managers of the national campaign in various 
Northern States, and alwaj's added to his high reputation as a 
public speaker. His friends, however, regard his last effort, being 
an educational address in Florida, as the most powerful and elo- 
quent of his life. 

In his private life. Governor Aycock is a man of exemplary 
habits, being entirely free from those weaknesses and excesses 
that sometimes stain the characters of public men, and it is to be 
observed that the influence of his mother upon him in his early 
years was strong and beneficial, not merely as to his moral and 
spiritual life, but also as to his education and intellectual pur- 
suits. Indeed, he is a Christian gentleman, having from youth 
up been a consistent member of the Baptist Church, and the prin- 
ciples of his Christian life — especially the injunction to do good 
unto others — underlie all his actions, both as an individual and as 
a public character. 

Agreeable to this trait, he has become a member of several 
associations whose object is to benefit mankind, for he is a Mason, 
an Odd Fellow and a member of the Knights of Pythias. 

Simple in his habits, he finds both recreation and opportunity 
for reflection in taking long walks, and he is never so happy as 
when circumstances permit him to indulge in such exercise. 

Governor Aycock married on May 20, 1881, Miss Varina D. 
Woodard, and after her death, on January 7, 1891, he married 
Miss Cora L. Woodard, who with seven of his nine children still 
survives. 

5". A. Ashe. 




CULLEN ANDREWS BATTLE 




'ENERAL CULLEN ANDREWS BATTLE, 
distinguished for his military service during 
the war and as an editor, was born at Powel- 
ton, in the State of Georgia, on the ist day of 
June, 1829. He was a descendant of Elisha 
Battle, the distinguished head of the noted 
family of Battles in North Carolina, who, among other public 
services, was the delegate to the constitutional convention that 
had under consideration the adoption of the Federal Constitution, 
and was chosen chairman when the convention resolved itself into 
a committee of the whole for. that purpose. From him was de- 
scended Cullen Battle, a native of Edgecombe County, a physician 
and planter, who married Jane Andrews Lamon, an accomplished 
daughter of Wake County. For a time they resided in Hancock 
County, Georgia, but subsequently removed to Eufaula, Alabama, 
where the early years of their son, the subject of this sketch, were 
passed. Dr. Battle was esteemed in his community for his high 
integrity, his industry and humble piety, and he was successful 
in his professional career as well as in his planting operations. 
The subject of this sketch received his preparatory education at 
Brownwood Institute, in Georgia, and then entered the University 
of Alabama, where he graduated in 185 1. In the same year he 
was happily married to Miss Georgia Florida Williams, of La 
Grange, Georgia, and a few months later he was admitted to the 



84 NORTH CAROLINA 

bar, and practiced law until the breaking out of the war. In 
politics he was a Democrat. In i860 he was an elector on the 
Breckinridge and Lane ticket, and canvassed the State of Ala- 
bama with his colleague, Hon. William L. Yancy, and later 
accompanied Mr. Yancy to New York, Boston and Philadelphia 
in the national campaign. 

On the day the Southern Confederacy was formed, he enlisted 
as a private in the Tuskegee Light Infantry, but was soon after- 
ward elected major of the Third Alabama Regiment, of which, 
in July, 1861, he became lieutenant-colonel. At the battle of 
Seven Pines, June i, 1862, Colonel Lomax, the colonel of the 
regiment, was killed, and Lieutenant-Colonel Battle was promoted 
to fill the vacancy. He commanded the regiment until he was 
promoted brigadier-general upon the field of battle at Gettysburg. 
Colonel Battle, having received a severe wound at Seven Pines, 
was not in command of his regiment during the engagements 
around Richmond, but rejoined his command in time to partici- 
pate in the battles of Boonsboro and Sharpsburg. General 
Rodes, in command of his brigade, in his official report, men- 
tioned that "Colonel Battle, Third Alabama, deserved special 
mention for admirable conduct during the whole fight;" and he 
recommended Colonel Battle for promotion. Colonel Battle was 
slightly wounded at Sharpsburg, and during the second battle 
at Fredericksburg he was seriously injured by his horse falling 
upon him, but he continued to command his regiment, always 
displaying the same coolness and bravery and winning the com- 
mendation of his superiors, and having the full confidence and 
admiration of his soldiers. It is to be observed that in some 
historical articles relating to the battle of Gettysburg mention 
is made that "Battle's brigade, on the left of Iverson's brigade, 
gave way," whereas there was no Battle's brigade in existence at 
that time. 

Colonel Battle was promoted for gallant conduct on the field 
of Gettysburg, and was assigned to the command of Rodes's 
brigade, which afterward was known to history as Battle's 
brigade. Colonel Battle, in his report of that engagement, says : 



CULLEN ANDREWS BATTLE 85 

"I received instructions to move with my regiment, the Third 
Alabama, along with General Daniel. These instructions were 
followed until longer observance was impracticable. I at once 
moved on the right of General Ramseur, then advancing to the 
attack, and offered him my regiment. The offer was accepted, 
and my command acted under that gallant officer in a charge 
which drove the enemy from one of its strongholds." General 
Ramseur in his report says : "Colonel Battle, with the Third 
Alabama Regiment, rendered brilliant and invaluable service. 
Attaching his regiment to my command on his own responsibility, 
he came in at the right place, at the right time and in the right 
way." For his gallant conduct he was promoted on the field 
of battle. 

In the fall and winter following the Gettysburg campaign, the 
Confederate authorities were extremely anxious to know whether 
the troops whose time was about to expire would re-enlist. This 
was the supreme question of the hour. General Rodes decided 
to try and ascertain, and called on General Battle to make the 
test. Forming his brigade in line, General Battle stood before his 
men, and after appealing to their patriotism, said : "Soldiers, will 
you stand by your colors to the end? Your general awaits your 
answer. All who will enlist for the war step two paces to the 
front ; march !" At the word, every man stepped to the front. The 
news was quickly carried to Richmond, and the Confederate Con- 
gress unanimously passed "a resolution of thanks to the Alabama 
troops who have re-enlisted for the war." "Whereas the Alabama 
troops composing the brigade commanded by Brigadier-General 
Cullen A. Battle in the army of Northern Virginia," etc., etc., 
"that the thanks of Congress are due and are hereby cordially 
tendered." 

Under its intrepid commander, his brigade won honorable men- 
tion on every field, and it was particularly complimented by Gen- 
erals Lee, Ewell and Rodes for its conduct in the battles of the 
Wilderness and at Spottsylvania. 

On the 8th of May, General Battle, who was wounded in the 
right foot, but continued to command the brigade until after the 



86 NORTH CAROLINA 

battle of the Bloody Angle on the 12th, when he was sent to 
the hospital, where he remained until the middle of September. 
In the battle of Winchester, September 19th, his brigade was 
for a time held in reserve, but later was sent into action, with 
a result well described by President Davis : "Just then Battle's 
brigade moved forward and swept through the woods, driving 
the enemy before it, while Evans's brigade was rallied and co- 
operated. Our advance was resumed, and the enemy's attacking 
columns were thrown into great confusion, and fled from the 
field." General Early exclaimed: "It was a grand sight to see 
this immense mass hurled back in utter disorder by my two 
divisions, numbering very little over five thousand men." And 
after the battle General Early addressed a note to General Battle, 
according to him the credit of having saved the day in the enemy's 
first attack. General Battle led his brigade in the successful 
attack upon Sheridan's army at Cedar Creek, October 19th, but 
received a severe wound in the knee while General Ramseur was 
congratulating him. 

General John B. Gordon, in his reminiscences of the Civil War, 
says: "General Cullen A. Battle, of Alabama, was severely 
wounded while leading his men with characteristic dash and 
enthusiasm, but his brigade, one of the smallest and also one 
of the pluckiest, charged a battery supported by the Sixth Corps, 
the only one left, and captured in open field six additional pieces 
of artillery." After this engagement, General Battle was taken 
to Richmond and placed in Howard Grove Hospital, where he 
remained three months. While there he received information that 
his commission as major-general, dating from the battle of Win- 
chester, September 19, 1864, had been forwarded to the army, but 
he was never able to take the field again. 

Returning to Alabama, he entered again on the practice of the 
law, and in 1868 he was elected to Congress at the first general 
election, but was not admitted to his seat because of his inability 
to take the iron-clad oath. In 1870 his name was presented to 
the Democratic caucus in connection with the nomination for the 
United States senator, and he probably would have received that 



CULLEN ANDREWS BATTLE 87 

nomination, but during the balloting the legislature was advised 
by Democratic senators at Washington not to elect any man who 
could not take his seat. In 1874 he was a delegate to the consti- 
tutional convention of Alabama, and rendered important service 
in preparing the work of that convention. General Battle had 
always cherished a warm affection for North Carolina, the State 
of which his parents were natives, and where so many of his 
kindred resided; and besides, the division in the army to which 
his brigade was attached was in large part composed of North 
Carolinians, and from his association with them he entertained for 
North Carolinians the highest admiration and regard. So in 1880 
he was led to remove to North Carolina, where he was generally 
connected with journalism, a field in which he won laurels and 
contributed to the success of Democratic principles and the gen- 
eral good of the commonwealth. 

He was a very capable editor, and was greatly esteemed; so 
much so that he was elected by the people of New-Bern, where he 
was editing the Journal, mayor of the town, and he served in 
that capacity with great acceptability. Of his children. Rev. 
Henry Wilson Battle, D.D., and Miss Jennie Lamont Battle now 
survive. After a brief and painful illness, the spirit of this brave 
soldier and patriot returned unto God who gave it on the morn- 
ing of the 8th of April, 1905. His death, which occurred at 
Greensboro, North Carolina, the home of his son, was chronicled 
by the Southern press and universally lamented. Appropriate 
funeral services, attended by the Guilford Camp, United Con- 
federate Veterans, and the Guilford Chapter of the Daughters of 
the Confederacy, together with a vast multitude of the citizens of 
Greensboro, were held at the First Baptist Church, of which his 
son was pastor. The Rev. Dr. Livingston Johnson delivered a 
discourse of great tenderness and beauty, and the body was con- 
veyed to Petersburg, Virginia, to rest by that of his beloved 
wife, and within a few paces of historic battlefields of the mighty 
war in which he had figured so conspicuously. At Petersburg, 
the funeral cortege was escorted to the First Baptist Church of 
that city by the A. P. Hill Camp of Confederate Veterans, of 



88 NORTH CAROLINA 

which he was a member, and a large number of prominent citizens, 
where, because of the very intimate relations the deceased and 
his son (for eleven 3'ears pastor of the church) had sustained to 
the church and community, again very appropriate public exer- 
cises were held. The Rev. Dr. J. B. Hawthorne, of Richmond, 
one of the most eminent of Southern pulpit orators, concluded his 
eloquent oration with these beautiful words : "The best thing I 
can say of General Battle in this tribute to his worth is that he 
was a sincere and humble believer and follower of the Lord Jesus 
Christ. He has left to his children and grandchildren the im- 
perishable heritage of an unsullied name. He has left to the 
cause of his Master's kingdom an influence that will last till 
time's last thunder shakes the world below. . . . Let us turn 
our eyes away from this scene of sadness and weeping to the 
radiant hills of peace and bliss, where, to the music of golden 
harps by angel fingers touched, we will sing the praises of our 
Lord and Redeemer forever and ever. The unseen world has 
never been so real and so near to me as in recent days. I almost 
hear the breathing of disembodied spirits within the veil; I 
stretch out my hands to dear ones across the narrow stream of 
death. Verily, heaven is not a distant realm. 'The eye that shuts 
in the dying hour will open the next in bliss.' " 

5". A. Ashe. 





JOHN PAUL BARRINGER 




OHN PAUL BARRINGER, or, as he wrote 
his name, Paulus Behringer, was born in the 
duchy of Wurtemburg, Germany, on the 4th of 
June, 1 72 1. He was the eldest son of a family 
of six children. Tradition has it that his 
father's name was Wilhelm and his mother's 
name Paulina. Nothing further is known of his family's ante- 
cedents beyond the tradition common in all its branches, that many 
of the Beringer family left France with the Huguenots about 
1600, before the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, some going to 
England and some to Germany. 

John Paul Barringer, the founder of the North Carolina family, 
and the subject of this sketch, left home alone when just past his 
majority, and sailed from Rotterdam for America in the ship 
Phcenix, Commander William Wilson, landing at Philadelphia 
September 30, 1743. (See p. 164, "Rupp's Collection of 30,000 
Names, etc.") 

Within a year after his arrival in America he married Ann 
Eliza Eisman, and the young couple settled in the Wyoming 
Valley in Pennsylvania, where they remained for some years, and 
prospered. 

About 1750-55 the tide of emigration turned strongly south- 
ward, and the young couple, with two children (Catherine, born 
November 24, 1750, and John, born November 26, 1752), came 



90 NORTH CAROLINA 

to the South. Young Barringer, on reaching North Carolina, 
settled in what is now Cabarrus County, on Dutch Buffalo Creek, 
about opposite the point where he afterward built his large home, 
"Poplar Grove." 

About the time of his arrival in North Carolina, John Paul 
Barringer sent to Germany for his parents and his younger 
brothers and sisters. Both of his parents died at sea, but we learn 
from "Rupp's Names of Emigrants," quoted above (p. 187), 
that Mathias Barringer arrived at the port of Philadelphia Sep- 
tember 16, 1748, in the ship Paliena, John Brown, Master, and 
with him probably came the daughters of the family. 

By a letter from Colonel John Barnhardt, who knew all the 
members of the farnily, written when he was eighty-five years of 
age to the Hon. D. M. Barringer, we learn that these children 
were five in number, as follows : George Henry Barringer, who 
settled on Little Dutch Buffalo Creek, two miles south of a place 
known as Gold Hill, in Rowan, now Montgomery, County. The 
other brother, Mathias Barringer, afterward a captain in the 
colonial militia, married a Miss Bushart and settled in the county 
of Lincoln, now Catawba County, two miles from the present 
town of Newton. During Rutherford's Indian campaign, in 1776, 
this Mathias Barringer, with five other members of his company, 
was ambushed and killed by the Cherokee Indians, and some years 
ago a monument was erected to their memory in the court-house 
square at Newton, where it stands to-day. Of the three daughters, 
Anna Maria Barringer, the oldest sister, married Christian Barn- 
hardt ; another sister, named Catherine, married Christian Auben- 
shein (Ovenshine), and another, named Dolly, married Nicholas 
Cook. 

Of the children of John Paul Barringer by his first wife, Ann 
Eliza Eisman, the oldest, Catherine, married November 26, 1772, 
Colonel John Phifer, the elder, "a conspicuous and leading man 
of his day," a signer of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Inde- 
pendence, and one of the five brothers who founded the well- 
known family of this name. After his death she married George 
Savitz (Savage). (See Rumple's "History of Rowan County," 



JOHN PAUL BARRINGER 91 

pp. 258-260.) From the Phifer union there were two children: 
( I ) Margaret, the little maid of seven, whose deed of heroism is 
recorded in Rumple's "History of Rowan County," p. 258, and 
who married John Simianer; and (2) Paul Barringer Phifer, who 
was the father of General John N. Phifer of Cabarrus, and the 
ancestor of the late General Charles W. Phifer, the youngest 
general of the Confederate States armies. The other child of 
John Paul Barringer and Ann Eliza Eisman, John Barringer, be- 
came a captain in the army of the Revolution and a man of prom- 
inence. He was the owner of the valuable farm taken from the 
Tory Hagar, and known as the "House Mill." 

Just before the Revolutionary War, John Paul Barringer's first 
wife died, and in 1777 he married again, this time Catherine 
Blackwelder, twenty-two years of age, a daughter of Caleb Black- 
welder (Schwartzwelder) and Polly Decker, his wife. He now 
moved across Dutch Buffalo Creek and built a new home, "half 
residence, half castle," which he named "Poplar Grove," and here 
were born to him ten children : 

1. Paul, born September 26, 1778; afterward General Paul Bar- 
ranger of the War of 1812. (See sketch of his life in this work.) 

2. Mathias, born December 16, 1779; married Miss Bolinger 
and moved west to Missouri. 

3. Martin, born September 7, 1781 ; died November 21, 1801. 

4. Elizabeth, born May 4, 1783; married first George Pitts, and 
second John Boone. 

5. Sarah, born December 18, 1784; married Jacob Brem of 
Lincoln County, North Carolina. 

6. Esther, born November 8, 1786; married Thomas Clark of 
Virginia and moved West. 

7. Daniel L., born October i, 1788; married Miss Nancy White 
of Raleigh, North Carolina, a granddaughter of Governor Caswell, 
whose daughter Anna married William White, secretary of State 
for North Carolina from 1778 to 181 1. This son, Daniel L. 
Barringer, was a member of Congress from the Raleigh district 
from 1826 to 1835, and then moved to Tennessee, where he became 
speaker of the House of Representatives and otherwise prominent 



92 NORTH CAROLINA 

in the political life of that State, where many of his descendants on 
the distaff side are still found. 

8. Jacob C, born November i, 1791 ; married Miss Ury. 

9. Leah, born September 16, 1792; married first David Holton, 
and second Jacob Smith. 

10. Polly, born February 28, 1796; married Wesley Harris and 
moved to Trenton, Tennessee. 

John Paul Barringer was of medium stature, jet black hair, 
active and energetic in his movements. He was a man of great 
force of character and became prominent and influential in his 
portion of the State. He was a member of the legislature in 1793, 
when he and his relative, Caleb Phifer, represented Cabarrus 
County for the first time after its formation. He was a captain 
in the colonial militia, and tradition says that he was chief agent 
in causing the separation of Cabarrus from the mother county of 
Mecklenburg. This was said to be due to his anger at the people 
of Charlotte, caused by their ill-concealed merriment at his giving 
his military commands in German. The county was named for 
Stephen Cabarrus of Chowan, then speaker of the House of Com- 
mons, who aided him in getting the act through the legislature. 

In 1768 Governor Tryon tried to conciliate the people of West- 
ern North Carolina, and made a visit to Mecklenburg County, 
and among others he visited Captain Barringer at "Poplar Grove." 
In Governor Tryon's Journal we read (p. 825, Vol. VII., of the 
"North Carolina Colonial Records") as follows: 

"Wednesday, August 31, 1768. The governor waited on Captain Bar- 
ringer; a beautiful plantation and skillfully managed, particularly the 
meadow land, which produced excellent hay." 

The italics are from the records of Governor Tryon in his own 
handwriting. This confirms a tradition long existing in Cabarrus 
County regarding the visit. Bernheim, in his "History of the 
German Settlement and the Lutheran Church in the Carolinas" 
(p. 248), says of Governor Tryon: 

"He arrived in the settlement of Dutch Buffalo Creek and lodged with 
Captain Barringer, who was well known for his influence and his hospitality. 



JOHN PAUL BARRINGER 93 

The story is that the governor appeared in full uniform, with a cocked hat 
and sword, drank freely of the captain's rich wine, which he always kept on 
hand, and he condescended to try his hand at mowing the green meadow 
lands on Dutch Buffalo Creek, and he left fully persuaded that he had no 
stauncher friend than the 'Gallant Dutchman' in all the country, but in 
this, of course, he was disappointed." 

John Paul Barringer was a man of pronounced religious views, 
and was extremely liberal toward the church. We find in Bern- 
heim's history, above referred to, the following (p. 249; also 
p. 761, Vol. VIII., "North Carolina Colonial Records") : 

"About the year 1771 the members of the Lutheran Church, at the sug- 
gestion of Captain John Paul Barringer, separated themselves from their 
German Reformed brethren, and built their own church on the site of the 
upper portion of the old graveyard. The work was undertaken by Daniel 
Jarrett, while Captain Barringer acted as building committee. The church 
was built chiefly at his own expense, and out of gratitude to him the con- 
gregation had a pew erected in the church for the special use of himself 
and family. It was raised somewhat above the others and located in a 
prominent part of the church, and was enclosed. He was a true-hearted 
and devoted Lutheran, thoroughly attached to his church, and seems to 
have been a defender of the rights of the German settlers there, and a 
leading man among them." 

As indicated above, he was an early champion of American Inde- 
pendence. In an effort to wean him from his allegiance to the colo- 
nies, he, with other magistrates of the Crown, were offered military 
commands by Governor Martin (see pp. 183, 184, Haywood's "His- 
tory of Lord Tryon"), but even this temptation did not draw him 
from his allegiance to the land of his adoption. During the Revolu- 
tionary War he was captured by Tories and carried to Camden, 
South Carolina, where he was thrown into prison, and was in 
confinement there when the battle of Camden was fought, with 
Gates's defeat. When he was liberated he made his way home- 
ward, only to catch smallpox, which he unwittingly conveyed to 
his family, and as a result the two older children of the family 
were badly marked. He accumulated a large estate, and died 
January i, 1807, at the advanced age of eighty-six years. He 



94 NORTH CAROLINA 

was buried in old St. John's Churchyard, near Mount Pleasant. 
He left an injunction in his will enjoining his executors to edu- 
cate his minor children in the best schools in the country, and in 
the Protestant faith. He, like many of his countrymen coming 
to America after their majority, never acquired the use of the 
English language. This undoubtedly handicapped him not a little, 
a fact which has been commented upon by the colonial writer, 
Rev. G. William Welker, in his "History of the Early German 
Reformed Settlements of North Carolina." 

"Many could neither read nor speak English, or understand it when 
spoken by others ; . . . nevertheless, a few Germans before and during 
the War of the Revolution were able to make themselves felt in the events 
happening about them. Barringer of Mecklenburg, Forney of Lincoln 
and Goertner of Guilford" (p. 730, Vol. VIII., "North Carolina Colonial 
Records"). 

This, in brief, is the life of "Pioneer Paul" Barringer, a man 
whose name, through his descendants, has been connected with 
nearly every movement, State or national, that makes the history 
of North Carolina. 

Dr. Paul B. Barringer. 

D. M. Barringer, Jr. 





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GENERAL PAUL BARRINGER 




fAUL BARRINGER, afterward General Paul 
Barriiiger, born September 26, 1778, at "Pop- 
lar Grove," was the oldest child of Captain John 
Paul Barringer and Catherine (Blackwelder), 
his wife. He was educated in early life chiefly 
in the German language, but at the age of 
eighteen was sent off to an English classical school, where he 
remained for three years, and as a result .he spoke and wrote both 
English and German fluently, facts of no mean importance in his 
subsequent mercantile life. When twenty-one years of age he 
settled at Concord, and, aided by his father, began his career as 
planter and merchant, which he continued with unbroken success 
for forty-five years. When twenty-seven years of age he married 
an admirable woman, subsequently widely and favorably known 
throughout this section, Elizabeth Brandon, born February 14, 
1783, the youngest daughter of Matthew Brandon of Rowan, who 
was a magistrate of the Crown, a veteran of the Revolution and 
a man of great force of character, as is shown by the excellent 
account of his life by Mrs. Irwin, and especially by the "Farewell 
Address to my Children," quoted in this account. Matthew 
Brandon was the grandson of John Brandon and the son of Rich- 
ard Brandon and Margaret Locke, the sister of General Matthew 
Locke. Matthew Brandon had a younger sister, Elizabeth, the 
fair maiden who furnished the breakfast for General Washington, 



96 NORTH CAROLINA 

and who afterward married Francis McCorkle. This EHzabeth 
Brandon was the aunt of the Elizabeth herein mentioned as the 
wife of Paul Barringer; Mrs. Barringer was also a near kins- 
woman of Colonel Francis Locke, the hero of the battle of 
Ramsour's Mill. (For a full history of the Brandon and Locke 
families, see chap. 23, Rumple's "History of Rowan County," and 
pp. 399 and 400 of Wheeler's "Reminiscences," and the sketch 
of the life of Matthew Brandon by Mrs. James P. Irwin in the 
Charlotte Democrat. ) 

After their marriage, February 21, 1805, this young couple 
settled in Concord, where they remained till 181 1, when they 
moved to the old family home, "Poplar Grove." Here they raised 
a family of nine children, two sons dying in childhood. These 
children were: I. Daniel Moreau, born July 30, 1806; died 
September i, 1873 (see sketch of his life in this work) ; II. Mar- 
garet, born February 12, 1808; died September 5, 1897. She 
married first John Boyd, and second Andrew Greir. She was a 
woman of remarkable force and character, living with unimpaired 
intelligence to an extreme old age, and seeing the fourth genera- 
tion of her descendants. III. Paul Brandon, born December 25, 
1809; married Mary Pickens Carson, daughter of Richard Carson 
of Concord, and to them were born five children: (i) Paul, 
married Kate Herron, and raised two children — Pauline Brandon, 
born January i, 1863, and Victor C, born January 30, 1865, who 
married Georgia Tucker Stubbs of Monroe, Louisiana; (2) Daniel 
Moreau, killed accidentally at fourteen years of age; (3) William 
Gaston, killed at battle of Murf reesboro ; (4) Mary Alice, married 
first Frank Thompson, and next Dr. Byron Lemley; (5) Martha 
Elizabeth, married James A. Lyon. This Paul B. Barringer was 
one of the first settlers in the "Chickasaw Purchase" at Pontotoc, 
Mississippi, and was active in locating the town of Oxford, and 
securing for it the State University. He became a man of wealth 
and influence, and was at one time a member of the legislature 
of that State. Always strong and decided in his convictions, he 
never ceased to denounce the "Repudiation Party and Policy" of 
his adopted State. He died March 3, 1878. IV. Mary Ann, 



GENERAL PAUL BARRINGER 97 

born November 15, 181 1 ; married Charles W. Harris; died at her 
home, "Mill Grove," April 17, 1845, and buried at Poplar Tent 
Church. V. Matthew, born September 29, 181 3; died May 3, 
1817. VI. WiUiam, born February 18, 1816; died March 17, 
1873; buried at the Methodist Churchyard, Greensboro, North 
Carolina. (See sketch of his life in this work.) VIL Elizabeth, 
born March 6, 1818; married Edwin Harris; died at Newton, 
North Carolina, August 11, 1872. Ylll. Alfred, born Feb- 
ruary 5, 1820; died March, 1824. IX. Rufus, born December 2, 
1821 ; died February 3, 1895. (See sketch of his life in this 
work.) X. Catherine Jane, born August 9, 1824; married Gen- 
eral William C. Means December 30, 1841, and died at "Bellevue" 
June 4, 1874. XL Victor (Clay), born March 29, 1827; married 
Maria A. Massey; died May 27, 1896. (See sketch of his life in 
this work.) 

General Paul Barringer was "in stature near six feet, a little 
stooped, bald head, dark, curly hair, blue eyes, fair complexion, 
high forehead and small hands and feet." He was a man of singu- 
lar modesty, and preferred the simple life of the home to all else, 
but when aroused he was a man of power and persistence. De- 
spite his disinclination, he was for twelve years the representative 
of his county in the State Commons and Senate. Like many 
modest men, he seems to have been underestimated. Moore, in 
his "History of North Carolina" (Vol. I., p. 448), says of the 
new members of the legislature of 1806, "Of these, General Paul 
Barringer was not of shining qualities, but as the founder of a 
distinguished race, survives as did Rudolph of Hapsburg and 
Conrad of Hohenzollern." This historian seems never to have 
read General Barringer's letter (republished in Charlotte Demo- 
crat, May 20, 1892) to Hon. Charles Fisher, during the "Nullifi- 
cation Campaign" of 1832-33, when practically at one bold stroke 
of the pen he routed this doughty politician. In 1838 the multi- 
plicity of his interests — three plantations, two stores, a tannery 
and cotton mill interests — forced him to leave "Poplar Grove" and 
move nearer to the center of his field of operations. He therefore 
built a new home, "Bellevue," two and one-half miles west of 



98 NORTH CAROLINA 

Concord, which later became by purchase the home of his son-in- 
law, General W. C. Means. In early political life he was a Fed- 
eralist, later a Whig. He thought the institution of slavery an 
economic failure, and upon the opening of the lands of the "Chick- 
asaw Purchase" in Mississippi he bought land there and sent most 
of his slaves to that State in care of his second son, Paul Brandon 
Barringer, later of Oxford, Mississippi. 

General Paul Barringer was a man of great public spirit; he 
subscribed $2000 for the construction of the Raleigh and Gaston 
Railroad, the first in North Carolina. He took, in 1839, 
$5000 in stock in the Concord Cotton Mill, one of the pioneer 
mills in that now great and flourishing Southern industry. Gen- 
eral Paul Barringer was rather opposed to the War of 1812, but 
so great was his influence throughout his section of the State, 
that when the hurried call for volunteer troops was made by Gov- 
ernor Hawkins, he was commissioned a brigadier-general of vol- 
unteers, his commission (still extant) bearing date December 23, 
1812, signed by the governor, William Hawkins, and ratified by 
both Houses of the General Assembly. Like his father, he was 
a man of deep religious feeling. He was an officer in the Lutheran 
Church, and, without ostentation, a liberal contributor to its 
cause. 

Regarding General Paul Barringer's later days, we take the 
following clipping from a communication by Mrs. James P. 
Irwin in the Charlotte Democrat: 

"In 1843 his health began to fail and in 1844 he went to the Wilson 
Springs (now Cleveland Sulphur Springs, near Shelby, N. C), and was 
seemingly improved and started to return, when he was taken ill at 
(Burton's Hotel), Lincolnton, and died there June 20, 1844. Nearly all 
the family gathered at 'Bellevue' and the largest concourse of people, 
up to that time, ever seen in Concord, attended the funeral. In the family 
group was a striking figure, his aged mother, then eighty-nine years old." 

In passing, it is to be remembered that General Paul Barringer's 
mother was Catherine Blackwelder, wife of Pioneer John Paul 
Barringer. She lived to the advanced age of ninety- four (until 



GENERAL PAUL BARRINGER 99 

1848), seeing her children and children's children rise to positions 
of honor and prominence, and having the unusual pleasure of 
seeing both a son and grandson on the floor of the Federal Con- 
gress. He was buried in new St. John's churchyard at Concord. 
General Barringer's death brought forth many manifestations of 
esteem, one of his friends and business associates, Colonel John 
Shimpock of Mt. Pleasant, writing (republished in the Concord 
Standard, May 19, 1892), "I have often remarked and have heard 
others remark that General Barringer did more good for the people 
in this county, both in church and State, than any man in it." 

In short, it is clear from contemporary history that General 
Paul Barringer was a high type of man, an unostentatious, but 
highly respected citizen, who was very useful in the community 
in which he lived ; a devoted husband and father, who was always 
careful by precept and example to inculcate in his children the 
traits so abundantly manifest in his own character, namely, Chris- 
tian piety, economy, absolute truthfulness, unbending honesty, 
fidelity to every trust assumed and a proper regard for the serious 
duties and responsibilities of life. The success of all his children 
in after years was doubtless largely due to the early training they 
received from their zealous father and from their no less conse- 
crated Christian mother. 

D. M. Barringer, Jr. 

Dr. Paul B. Barringer. 





DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER 




'HE subject of this sketch was the eldest child of 
General Paul Barringer of Cabarrus, having 
been born at the family home place, "Poplar 
Grove," near Concord, July 30, 1806. He was 
the most distinguished of the name in public 
service, to which he devoted the best years of his 
fife, to the pracfical exclusion of all private considerations, having 
doubtless been encouraged to enter political life by his father, and 
especially by his uncle, Hon. Daniel Locke Barringer, for whom 
he was named, and vi^ho for a number of years in the early part of 
the last century (1826-35) was a representative in Congress from 
the Raleigh district of North Carolina, and subsequently became 
speaker of State legislature in the new State of Tennessee. 

Daniel M. Barringer was a man of ripe knowledge and wide 
experience, and accomplished much during the eventful times in 
which he lived. Though very quiet and dignified, he possessed 
an unusual charm of manner, which doubtless added much to 
his influence among many of the leading men of his generation in 
this country. His comfortable private means enabled him to de- 
vote the best years of his life to political afifairs, and what he did 
was done with all the earnestness of a very earnest, very high- 
minded, intensely patriotic and naturally gifted man. The fact 
that during a long and arduous political life he was never defeated 
in an election, but was elected by large majorities to the various 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER loi 

offices which he filled, is one of the many evidences of the confi- 
dence which the people of his native State reposed in him. His 
work in Congress along the lines of tarifif revision was particu- 
larly praiseworthy. In Allen Thorndike Rice's "Reminiscences 
of Abraham Lincoln," he is referred to as one of the three or four 
most eloquent members of the House of Representatives at the 
time when Mr. Lincoln first took his seat in Congress, and it is 
an interesting fact that he and Mr. Lincoln subsequently became 
desk-mates and firm , friends. He likewise enjoyed the intimate 
friendship of many other great men of his time ; for example, that 
of Generals Lee and Johnston, Mr. Peabody, the great philan- 
thropist; and, as a young man, that of Henry Clay. 

It has seemed fitting in treating of his active and useful career 
to quote in its entirety, from "Biographical Sketches of Eminent 
Americans," a sketch of his life written shortly after he had been 
appointed Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary to 
the Court of Spain, and to supplement this sketch, written more 
than half a century ago, with an account of his life from this 
date (1850) to the time of his death, which occurred at White 
Sulphur Springs, Virginia, September 1, 1873. This article, 
published in 1850, is, in full, as follows: 

"The subject of this sketch is now about forty-five years of age. He 
is a native of the county of Cabarrus (originally a part of the ancient 
and renowned county of Mecklenburgh'), in the State of North Carolina. 
His ancestors, both paternal and maternal, were active partisans in favor 
of the Revolutionary War, and suffered many privations and misfortunes, 
and one of them a long imprisonment, because of their ardent attachment 
to that holy struggle, which ended in the separation of the colonies from 
their mother country, and the establishment of our independence. They 
were among the early settlers of that patriotic portion of the then colonies, 
Western North Carolina. 

"His father, the late General Paul Barringer, was well known and dis- 
tinguished in his State. Though chiefly devoted to agricultural and com- 
mercial pursuits, and the happy quiet of retired and domestic life, Gen- 
eral Barringer was very often selected by the popular voice, the only 
public honor or office he ever accepted, to take part in the legislative 
councils of his native State. But his great happiness was in the moral 
training and liberal education of a large family of children, of whom the 



102 NORTH CAROLINA 

subject of this notice was the eldest. Under the wise care and prudent 
direction of his experienced father, habits of industry were happily com- 
bined with the progress of thought and the acquisition of knowledge. 

"Having attained the rudiments of a thorough English education, this 
son was placed at an academy of Greek and Latin studies and the lighter 
branches of mathematics, in his native county, under the tuition of the 
Rev. John Robinson, D.D., a Presbyterian clergyman of great distin- 
tion in the South, in whose noble character was happily blended the gen- 
tlest and purest piety with the most commanding eloquence, and a dignity 
of grace and personal demeanor, which won the hearts of all who knew 
him, and had the best and most lasting influences on the manners and 
principles of the many young men whose education and morals were 
entrusted to his care. Mr. Barringer had the happiness to enjoy in the 
highest degree the friendship of this eminent divine to the day of his 
death. 

"Having completed his academical course, he was entered a student 
at the University of North Carolina, then under the presidency of the 
late Rev. Joseph Caldwell, D.D,, whose warmest regards he also enjoyed 
in an eminent degree. In the year 1826 he was graduated at this insti- 
tution with high honors ; and after remaining some six months as a 
resident-graduate of the University in the further study of history and 
modern languages, he commenced the study of law in the town of Hills- 
boro. North Carolina, in the office and under the direction of the Hon. 
Thomas Ruffin, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of that State. In 
the year 1829 he established himself and entered upon the practice of his 
profession in his native county. He at once, for so young a lawyer, 
received a large share of public patronage and favor, and reaped the 
rewards of a lucrative practice. 

"In this year, too. he was elected by a most flattering expression of public 
opinion to the legislature of the State. To this honorable post he was 
successively, and by equal and even increased manifestations of popular 
regard, returned for a number of years, never having suffered a defeat, 
and without the slightest abatement in the public confidence. 

"In 183s he was elected a member of the convention to revise and amend 
the constitution of North Carolina. [His work here was of great value to 
"his State.— Author]. As a member of these popular assemblies, he took 
an active part in public affairs, and always cheerfully performed the 
duties of his station. When occasion required, he always took a due 
share in the public debates, though avoiding the bad taste and fatal mis- 
take, so common among the public men of our country, of too much 
speaking, and of sacrificing the useful and solid to the light and orna- 
mental. He was earnestly devoted to the improvement of the internal 
and intellectual condition of his State, and the development of her rich 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER 103 

resources. As a member of the legislature, he was at different times 
chairman of the important committees on the judiciary and internal 
improvements. Ardently attached to the profession of the law, and the 
good results produced, and the high prinfiples inculcated by its just admin- 
istration, he did not permit his public duties to interfere with his prac- 
tice during the period of his service in the councils of the State. 

"In 1843 he was elected to Corigress from the Second Congressional Dis- 
trict of North Carolina, and was re-elected from the same district in 1845, 
after a most exciting contest with the late Hon. Charles Fisher, one 
of the most successful, active and distinguished politicians of that State. 

"In 1847 he was again elected to the House of Representatives by a 
most flattering testimonial of public confidence. It is worthy of record, 
that in one of the counties (Stanly) of the district, he received every 
vote that was given. In 1849 he declined a re-election to Congress. In 
that year he was appointed by the late lamented President Taylor, Envoy 
Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of the United States to the 
Court of her Catholic Majesty, the Queen of Spain, and upon the death 
of General Taylor was reappointed to that distinguished post by Presi- 
dent Fillmore. He is now abroad in the discharge of the duties of this 
mission, which has become so important to the Government and people of 
the United States, and which, during the critical period of the relation 
existing between these countries for the last two or three years, has been 
one of peculiar delicacy, difficulty and responsibility. The career of 
Mr. Barringer, both in Congress and as our representative abroad, is too 
recent and too well known to need comment." 

The work which he was called upon to do while in Madrid was 
of a particularly important character, as the relations between the 
two countries were at that time more or less strained. He was as 
successful as a diplomat as he had been as a legislator, and 
acquitted himself in this difiScult task with credit to himself and 
to his country. It is interesting to recall that during his residence 
in Madrid he obtained from the Spanish Government a tentative 
offer to cede the island of Cuba to the Government of the United 
States upon the payment, it is said, of $70,000,000 in gold. It was 
one of the great ambitions of his life to be instrumental in causing 
our Department of State to conclude this purchase, but unfortu- 
nately it was impossible to persuade the administration of the 
wisdom of this step. It is not known now whether or not possible 
complications with some of the foreign powers prevented this 



I04 NORTH CAROLINA 

purchase of the island of Cuba by the United States, but it is at 
least interesting to reflect how different history would have been 
had the island been purchased by our government at that time. 

After his return to his native State, he consented to represent 
Cabarrus County in the legislature for a single term, in order to 
assist in putting through some legislation that was of special 
importance. After that he decided to retire to private life, and 
although the position of foreign minister was twice afterward 
offered to him, he refused these offers, preferring to spend the 
remainder of his days in the quiet and comfort of his home. 

In i860, when the sectional crisis came, his eminence as a public 
man made him a prominent figure. Conservative by nature, and 
a wise and prudent statesman, he was, along with Chief Justice 
Ruffin, Mr. George Davis, Mr. David S. Reid and Ex-Governor 
Morehead, commissioned by his native State of North Carolina 
to be her representative in the Peace Conference held at Wash- 
ington on the 4th of February, 1861, which was attended by dele- 
gates from nearly every State in the Union. Although thoroughly 
in accord with the South, and anxious for a peaceful settlement 
of differences, he became indignant at the course of the Northern 
statesmen, who persisted in rejecting every offer of conciliation. 
On the 23d of February he telegraphed to Governor Ellis from 
Washington: "Crittenden's proposition, with or without Vir- 
ginia's amendment, will not pass. Lincoln is here unexpectedly; 
it is said he wants a National Convention. Uncertain when 
we adjourn, but I think on Monday. Delay is part of their 
game." 

He had wisely forecast the outcome, and those who had hoped 
for a settlement by means of the Peace Conference suffered a great 
disappointment. Returning home, Mr. Barringer gave his best 
services to the people of North Carolina. He was an able counsel- 
lor, and on terms of special intimacy with Governor Ellis; and 
on the death of Governor Ellis, in July, 1861, he became the 
principal adviser of Governor Henry T. Clark, and throughout 
the war he rendered efficient and valuable service to the State by 
his wisdom and his ripe experience. He was not permitted, be- 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER 105 

cause of a broken leg and other physical infirmities, to serve as a 
soldier on the field of battle. 

After the cessation of hostilities, he continued a prominent 
adviser in public afifairs, and earnestly co-operated in those 
measures that looked to an early restoration of North Carolina to 
the Union. In 1866 he attended the Peace Convention at Phila- 
delphia, and sought in vain to placate public sentiment at the 
North. In 1867, although the President of the United States and 
Chief Justice Chase regarded North Carolina as restored to the 
Union, the agitators in Congress were not content, and abolished 
the State government and placed the people of the State under 
the rule of a major-general. Mr. Barringer, with nearly every 
other gentleman of the State, opposed these proceedings. In 1868 
he was a leading Democrat, supporting Governor Seymour of 
New York for the Presidency, and was associated with Governor 
Bragg and Governor Graham on the State Committee when, early 
in 1872, Judge Merrimon was nominated for governor, and Mr. 
Barringer then became the chairman of the State Committee to 
manage the campaign, and did most efficient work, so that at 
the election in August the Republican majority, which had been 
in 1868 many thousands, fell to a scant 1800. 

The Northern Republicans by that time had some dissensions 
among themselves, and the liberal Republicans, at a convention 
held in Cincinnati, nominated Horace Greeley for the Presidency. 
The Democratic National Convention assembled in Baltimore 
on July 9, 1872. The editor-in-chief of this work at that time 
wrote : "Hon. D. M. Barringer, the able, active and efficient con- 
ductor of the Conservative canvass in this State, is now in Balti- 
more in attendance on the National Democratic Convention. He 
is for Greeley and Brown. No man in the State is better ac- 
quainted with public sentiment than General Barringer, and we 
may truly say that none other of our distinguished citizens has a 
greater hold upon the affections of our people than this oft-tried 
statesman." (Although he had never held a commission, he was 
very generally known through North Carolina by the title of 
"general." — Author.) In that convention Mr. Barringer was the 



io6 NORTH CAROLINA 

chairman of the North Carolina delegation, and there was great 
applause when he announced that "North Carolina gives her entire 
vote for Horace Greeley!" 

Mr. Greeley had been the great apostle of the abolition of 
slavery, and the nomination of him for the Presidency by the. 
Southern white people was an evidence of how thoroughly they 
had accepted the legitimate results of the war, and it was a peace- 
offering extended by them to the Northern people, who had 
differed with the South on the question of slavery. Although this 
manifestation of Southern feeling and Southern sentiment was 
then without avail, its wisdom was shown in the changed attitude 
of the North to the South in the following years, and it is certain 
that Mr. Barringer's service to the people of the South, and, 
indeed, to the people of the entire Union, in this effort to pro- 
mote reconciliation, was of lasting importance. Had he aspired 
to the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate in 
1872, it is very probable, such was the universal esteem in which 
he was held, that he could have received it. But he refused to 
allow his name to be used in this connection, and advised 
his friends tc vote for the Hon. Matthew W. Ransom, who 
was subsequently chosen for his first term in the United States 
Senate. 

Mr. Barringer married, August 15, 1848, Miss Elizabeth 
Wethered of Baltimore, who was born February 2, 1822, and was 
the daughter of Lewin and Elizabeth (Ellicott) Wethered. She 
was a member of one of the oldest and most highly respected 
families of Maryland. The five children of this happy union 
were (i) Lewin Wethered, born Madrid, March 3, 1850; died 
Philadelphia, December 15, 1900; (2) Elizabeth Brandon, born 
Madrid, March 24, 1851; died Raleigh, November i, 1864; 
(3) Paul Moreau, born New York, October 13, 1858; died Balti- 
more, May 12, 1859 ; (4) Daniel Moreau, born Raleigh, May 25, 
i860; and (5) Samuel Wethered, born Raleigh, November 28, 
1861 ; died Raleigh, March 24, 1864. 

He was very domestic in his tastes, and was devotedly attached 
to his family, whom he surrounded with every comfort his means 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER 107 

would allow. There are some now living who remember his 
generous hospitality at his commodious and beautiful home in 
Raleigh, to which he returned about 1856, after his residence 
abroad. During the latter years of the war, and those which 
succeeded it, he sufifered great domestic afflictions, losing, on 
June 4, 1867, his dearly beloved and devoted wife, who is truth- 
fully described as having been "beautiful in character and in 
person." Not long before this he had also lost his only daughter, 
Elizabeth Brandon, to whom he was devotedly attached, as well as 
two infant sons. 

Having lost, in common with so many others, nearly all of his 
ample fortune by reason of the war, he returned, shortly after its 
close, to the practice of the law, which he had relinquished many 
years before, and, despite his great domestic sorrows, struggled 
bravely on, in order to properly educate and make some provision 
for his two remaining sons : ( i ) Lewin Wethered Barringer, who 
graduated at the University of Virginia, studied law under Chief 
Justice Pearson, practiced his profession for a few years in 
Raleigh, and in after years became a very successful and dis- 
tinguished member of the Philadelphia bar, and died, as above 
stated, at Jefferson Hospital, Philadelphia, on December 15, 1900; 
(2) Daniel Moreau Barringer, Jr., who, after graduating at 
Princeton and at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, has 
achieved notable success as a geologist and mining engineer, and 
is one of the authors of a standard legal work, "The Law of Mines 
and Mining in the United States." Upon these two sons he 
lavished all the love and solicitude of which so great a nature was 
capable, being careful to give them every advantage which he 
himself had possessed in the way of the best possible educationa) 
training. 

There is no doubt that his work in connection with the cam- 
paign of 1872, and the many speeches which he made during it, 
did much to undermine his health, which had never been very 
robust. An illness which began at this time finally resulted in 
his death a year later at White Sulphur Springs, Virginia. Aftei 
his death there appeared in the North Carolina and Virginia 



io8 NORTH CAROLINA 

papers, and especially in those of his native county of Cabarrus — 
the Concord papers appearing in mourning out of respect to his 
memory — many eulogistic accounts of this truly admirable man. 
It has seemed appropriate to the author of this article to select 
extracts from two of them, as accurately representing the man 
and reflecting the esteem in which he was held by all classes 
of the community. One from the Battleboro Advance, Septem- 
ber 5, 1873, as follows : 

"One of the best and truest men of North Carolina is no more. Hon. 
Daniel M. Barringer breathed his last at the Greenbrier White Sulphur 
Springs in Virginia, on Monday, the 1st inst. 

"General Barringer has filled many positions of honor and trust, and 
in all of them he exhibited the highest integrity, honor and patriotism. 
No matter whether serving his country at home, at the National Capitol, 
or at a foreign court, he was alike distinguished for his fidelity and 
zealous performance of every trust confided to his care. At the time of 
his death he was chairman of the Democratic Executive Committee of 
North Carolina. His loss is a heavy calamity to his native State, and 
among her long list of true and patriotic sons, she has had none truer 
or nobler than Daniel M. Barringer." 

The other, from the Charlotte Democrat, September 9, 1873, 
quoting in full an article which had appeared in the Raleigh News 
of September 2, 1873 : 

"A good and great man and a true North Carolinian has departed this 
life. ..." 

After enumerating the record of his life, of which his descend- 
ants are justly proud, this article goes on to say: 

"But as high and as numerous as were the honors won by this lamented 
gentleman on the political arena, his true eulogy is to be found in his 
virtues as a man and as a citizen. In his walk and conversation in private 
life are to be found a nobler claim to the affectionate remembrance of 
those whom he has left behind. As a statesman, his record is a proud 
one; but in his character as a Christian gentleman are to be found at- 
tributes of a higher and more enduring fame. Daniel Moreau Barringer 
is dead. He has been gathered to his fathers. Although he is gone, 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER 



109 



he has left behind for our emulation a lofty character, and the memory 
of a useful and well-spent life." 

However, all is truthfully summed up in the brief epitaph 
written by his eldest son, who now rests beside him in Green 
Mount Cemetery, Baltimore, which is as follows: 

"A noble Christian man loved and honored by all." 

D. M. Batringer, Jr. 





WILLIAM BARRINGER 




! N the genius, spirit or policy of Methodism there 
is something favorable to the development of 
strong men. Its history abundantly proves the 
truth of this statement. The period extending 
from 1825 to 1875 was especially fruitful in 
producing many of the noblest spirits that have 
been leaders of that denomination in North Carolina. Prominent 
among these were Numa F. Reid, William Closs, Charles F. 
Deems, Robert S. Moran, Braxton Craven, N. H. D. Wilson and 
William Barringer. All these were men of marked ability, differ- 
ing in type, in talent and in measure of usefulness, but all were 
recognized leaders. In weight of character, in soundness of judg- 
ment, in clearness of foresight, and in practical wisdom, none 
of these excelled William Barringer. In private interests, in pub- 
lic council, on the conference floor and in the cabinet of Bishops, 
his views were eagerly sought after, and, when expressed, always 
had great weight, and not unfrequently settled great questions and 
decided issues of vast import. 

He descended from a strong intellectual ancestry. His father 
was a man of great force and of wide influence. All of his 
brothers became distinguished citizens, and won fame in civil and 
military life. Had he chosen some other field than that of the 
ministry for the employment of his talent he might easily have 
obtained eminence as a financial, political or professional leader. 




E''^^ By £7, i?-H^/?iarnB S^ru.I\r:t^ 



fi. (zy~2.^6.^^z^-7^ ^ 



WILLIAM BARRINGER m 

William Barringer was the fourth son of General Paul Bar- 
ringer, and was born on Dutch Buffalo Creek, in Cabarrus County, 
North Carolina, on February i8, 1816. His childhood home was 
in a fine section of the Southland. It was midway between the 
ocean and the mountains, in the "hill country," where the lands 
were rolling and fertile; where the scenery was varied and in- 
spiring; where the air was full of oxygen and ozone, and where 
trees of many varieties grew in perfection, and wild game of 
different kinds were found in field and forest. 

General Barringer was a slave-owner and a large planter. His 
home was attractive, and all its surroundings were favorable to 
discipline, education and development. 

William, with the other children, from early life had the ad- 
vantages of a cultured home, the invigorating exercise of farm 
labor and out-door sports, and the then rare privilege of a good 
academic school. The result was, he developed a strong, healthy 
body, a vigorous mind and a laudable ambition for noble achieve- 
ment. After finishing his course at the academy, he continued 
to pursue his studies at the University of North Carolina until 
he became well equipped, in a general way, for any profession or 
business calling which he might later decide to enter upon. 

His father had planned for him a business career, and with this 
end in view opened for him a mercantile establishment in Con- 
cord. For several years he did business as a merchant, with great 
financial success. He won high esteem in the town and county 
because of his recognized ability, his energy and promptness in 
all his business relations and transactions. Up to this time he 
had not given serious thought to his religious interest, but was 
wholly absorbed in secular affairs and in worldly matters. 

In the year 1842 the Methodists held a large camp meeting 
near Concord. People from far and near attended. It continued 
for a week. Many leading families owned comfortable tents and 
lived on the ground during the meeting; others, in crowds, came 
and went. 

The singing, the prayers, the exhortations and sermons were 
stirring and powerful. The old-time fervor and fire pervaded 



112 NORTH CAROLINA 

the great congregations. The Holy Spirit was present in power. 
It was a Pentecostal occasion. The people were greatly moved. 
Saints rejoiced and shouted praises to the Lord. Sinners were 
cut to the heart. Strong men trembled under the powerful warn- 
ings of the Gospel. Many wept and prayed and cried aloud for 
mercy. A large number was happily converted to God. Mr. 
Barringer, with others from Concord, attended this meeting. 
While there he saw and heard and felt the power of the truth. 
He was deeply impressed ; but not having an emotional tempera- 
ment, and not being much in sympathy with that way of doing 
things, he did not yield at once to the powerful appeals of the 
ministers, nor to the strong convictions of his own mind. 

He returned to Concord and engrossed himself in business as 
before. But new light had come into his mind. New forces were 
sweeping through his soul. Piercing and overwhelming con- 
viction of sin was rending his whole being. He gave himself to 
thought, meditation and prayer, which led in a few days to a 
clear, powerful and radical conversion while alone in his count- 
ing-room. It was a marvellous change, a wonderful and glorious 
experience. To him old things had passed away and all things 
had become new. He was a new man in Christ Jesus, and united 
at once with the Methodist Church. From that day he had new 
views of life, of humanity and of duty. He became keenly alive 
to the sinfulness of mankind, to the need of deep and thorough 
repentance on the part of the individual, and of the great necessity 
of a life of faith in God through the Lord Jesus Christ. He also 
was impressed with the fact of man's direct accountability to God 
for the use of whatever talents or other resources committed to 
him. From this time forth secular business had no charm for him, 
and he felt an inward call to preach the Gospel. This he resolved 
to do at any cost. Soon afterward he disposed of his business in 
Concord, prepared himself for the ministry, and entered upon his 
life-long work, to which he often expressed his belief as having 
been called in answer to the prayers of his sister, Mrs. Means, wife 
of General W. C. Means. "Her prayers were doubly efficacious 
— in their results for her brother and in leading her to the church 



WILLIAM BARRINGER 113 

of her heart, for she Hved and died a true and earnest Methodist," 
she having previously been a Lutheran. 

These wrords in quotation are taken from the obituary of Mrs. 
Means, published in the North Carolina Presbyterian, June 24, 
1874, as is also the fact about Mr. Barringer's "belief" in her 
prayers. 

Cabarrus County was at that time in the bounds of the South 
Carolina Conference, as also were Mecklenburg, Anson, Robeson, 
Cumberland, New Hanover and other counties along the border. 
He decided to join that body, and did so at its session in 1844. 
His first charge was Wadesboro Circuit, with the Rev. Samuel 
Leard, presiding elder. He proved at once to be a most efficient 
and useful minister. His heart was truly in the work, and he had 
but one mission, namely, to do faithfully the duty of a Methodist 
minister and to "feed the flock of Christ." It was soon evident to 
those in authority that he was "an all round man," who could be 
safely sent to any appointment and fill any position acceptably to 
the people and successfully to the church. Hence, as occasion 
demanded, he was appointed to circuits, stations, districts or 
agencies, and filled all equally well ; which fact proved a rare com- 
bination of talents. Among the more important charges were 
Charlotte Station, Cheraw Station, presiding elder successively 
of Fayetteville, Wilmington, Greensboro and Salisbury districts. 
Later presiding elder of the Raleigh, Trinity College and Hillsboro 
districts. He was also agent for Greensboro Female College and 
pastor of West Market Street Church, Greensboro, in 1865-68. 
From these appointments it will be seen that he served the church 
in many important relations, and covered almost the entire terri- 
tory of the Conference in his extended work. 

In 1872 the session of the Conference was held in Fayetteville, 
from which he was returned to the Hillsboro district. At once he 
entered upon his work with great hope, zeal and devotion. He 
completed the first round of appointments on his district and 
returned to his family in Greensboro, where he had resided since 
the year 1858. He was greatly interested in the rebuilding of 
Greensboro Female College, the leading educational institution of 



114 NORTH CAROLINA 

his church. It had a few years before been destroyed by fire, 
and was again nearing completion. He had general oversight of 
the work of reconstruction. He was now in the full vigor of 
manhood, and was pushing forward at every point to get the 
college ready to reopen by the fall session. To this end he had 
contributed largely of his means, and was devoting much of his 
time. 

On the morning of March ii, 1873, he left his elegant home, 
which was near by, to investigate the progress of the work on the 
building. While passing out of a window of the third story of 
the west wing to the gangway, his foot slipped and he fell to the 
ground, twenty-eight feet below. His right thigh was broken in 
two places, his right arm and face were considerably bruised and 
the violence of the fall produced concussion of the brain, which 
caused his death. He did not suffer much pain, except occasional 
paroxysms. He remained conscious for four or five hours after 
the fall, during which time he gave ample evidence of his readiness 
to depart and be with Christ. His death took place at ten min- 
utes past seven o'clock, Monday evening, March 17, 1873. 

His tragic end shocked the entire State, for all who knew him 
realized that "a prince and a great man had fallen." His sudden 
departure carried grief into hundreds of homes, in which his name 
was a household word. To his church his loss was irreparable, 
for it looked in vain for one to take up his mantle and fill his 
place. 

On the 1 8th day of March, 1873, after appropriate funeral 
services at West Market Street Church, attended by a large crowd 
of sorrowing friends, his body was tenderly borne to the Metho- 
dist Cemetery, in South Greensboro, and laid beside that of his 
devoted wife and children, who had preceded him to the heavenly 
world. 

He left to his surviving relatives, a rich legacy in the pure and 
exalted life he had lived. Experimental religion was his favorite 
theme, and he exemplified its power in his daily life. 

In his every field of labor he was energetic, acceptable and suc- 
cessful. He was truly loyal to his church, loved its doctrines, its 



WILLIAM BARRINGER 115 

policy and its people. His church loved and honored him. He 
was elected a delegate or a reserve to every General Conference 
of his church from 1842 until his death. He was prominently 
connected with every important interest of his Conference, and 
was always faithful to the trusts committed to him. 

On the 19th day of November, 1850, Mr. Barringer was married 
to Miss Lavinia M. Alston of Chatham county, a lady of beauty, 
culture and wealth. The fruits of this happy union were five 
sons and three daughters, all of whom have since died but two — 
Colonel John A. Barringer, a prominent lawyer of Greensboro, 
North Carolina, and Paul B. Barringer of Oxford, Mississippi. 

As a preacher William Barringer held a high place in the public 
esteem. He made no effort at display, rhetorical effect or merely 
pulpit eloquence. His mission was too high and sacred for that. 
He was called of God to preach the Word. His was a great soul, 
burdened with a great message to dying men. From the store- 
house of a well-filled mind, from a large acquaintance with men, 
from the rich treasury of a deep personal experience, and from 
the Bible, his favorite book, he gathered facts, illustrations and 
incidents into which he breathed his own spirit, fused them into 
logical form, and then, out of a full soul, poured them into the 
minds and hearts of his hearers. 

Often he was eloquent in thought and word, and always im- 
pressive. All felt his power. The high character that he bore, 
the great confidence imposed in him, gave added force to his 
utterances and enabled him to wield a mighty influence over his 
audiences. 

No one can estimate the good that he accomplished on earth, 
but hundreds can testify to the uplifting influence of his life upon 
them. Though suddenly cut down, with his life work seemingly 
but half done, the world was better by his labors on earth, and 
having been faithful over a few things, none doubt but that his 
Lord hath made him ruler over many things. 

Greensboro Female College still stands as a monument of his 
devotion to the education of women and the crowning glory of his 
laborious and useful life. Leonidas W. Crawford. 




RUFUS BARRINGER 




JMONG the distinguished Confederate generals 
of this State who survived the Civil War and 
exerted a marked influence on public afifairs 
after the restoration of peace was Rufus Bar- 
ringer, of Cabarrus County. General Rufus 
Bar ringer was born December 2, 1821, at 
Poplar Grove, in Cabarrus County. He was prepared for college 
by R. I. McDowell at Sugar Creek Academy, and duly entered 
the University of North Carolina, from which he graduated in 
1842. He studied law with his eldest brother, D. M. Barringer, 
and then under the late Chief Justice Pearson, at his famous 
law school at Richmond Hill, in Yadkin County, where so many 
of the State's most able and distinguished jurists obtained their 
early legal training. He began the practice of his profession in 
Cabarrus and surrounding counties, where he soon acquired a 
large and lucrative practice, on account of his painstaking prep- 
aration of his cases, his tireless industry, and, above all, his intense 
loyalty to the cause of his clients. 

Like other members of his family, he was a Whig in politics, 
and, being of an ardent nature, he warmly espoused the prin- 
ciples and policies of his party, and advocated all progressive 
measures that tended to the upbuilding and development of the 
entire State, and particularly the Piedmont and western sections 
thereof. When young Barringer first entered the political arena. 



RUFUS BARRINGER 117 

the sectional feeling between the west and the east was very 
strong; for, while some of the causes of complaint had been 
removed by the amendments to the constitution in 1835, yet the 
hardship and want of facilities from which the west suffered 
were very detrimental to the progress, prosperity and happiness 
of the inhabitants of the western and Piedmont sections of the 
State. The financial condition of the State was deplorable, and 
in 1847 a project was brought forward by some Virginia and 
South Carolina capitalists to build a railroad from Charlotte to 
Danville without asking aid from the State, and this proposition 
was warmly espoused by the people of the section through which 
it was proposed that the road should pass. Young Barringer 
was zealous in his advocacy of the measure, and in 1848 was 
elected to the House of Commons with the purpose of securing 
a charter for the proposed road. While the Whigs generally 
favored internal improvements, the Democrats were funda- 
mentally opposed to the State appropriating any public money 
for such purposes. It so happened that the parties were equally 
divided in both houses of the General Assembly, and, by con- 
cession, the Whigs were awarded the speakership of the House 
and the Democrats were awarded the speakership of the Senate. 
On the question of internal improvements, and especially of this 
proposed Charlotte and Danville Railroad, the east differed with 
the west, and the Whigs of the east did not favor it. General 
Barringer in 1894 wrote a history of the railroad legislation at 
this session of the General Assembly, from which it appears that 
early in the session the outlook for any practical measure was 
hopeless. In this emergency, William S. Ashe, Democratic 
senator from New Hanover, and a strong advocate of internal 
improvements and all other progressive measures, drew a bill 
to incorporate the North Carolina Railroad, to run from Golds- 
boro to Charlotte, and providing for an appropriation of two 
millions of dollars by the State as aid to the construction of said 
road. This measure involved what in those days was such an 
enormous outlay of public funds that nearly everybody except 
Mr. Ashe was afraid of it. When the Charlotte and Danville bill 



ii8 NORTH CAROLINA 

was before the House, Mr. Stanly, of Washington, declared that 
the East would not support the "Danville sale," and most bitter 
feeling existed among the other members concerning the measure. 
Finally he said that he would support anything that looked like a 
North Carolina system, and Mr. Barringer thereupon defied him 
to make an offer of any bill providing for a general North Caro- 
lina system likely to pass, and with sufficient State aid to insure 
its success. Mr. Stanly then said he would pledge himself and 
his Eastern friends in support of the Ashe bill if Mr. Barringer 
would do the same. To this the latter assented, and, by arrange- 
ment, another railroad bill was taken up, and Barringer moved 
to strike out all after the enacting clause and to insert in lieu 
thereof the Ashe bill, which was done, and the bill finally passed 
the House, and eventually the Senate. Thus was incorporated 
the North Carolina Railroad Company, which subsequently con- 
structed the North Carolina Railroad, which has been of such 
great and lasting benefit to the State. In this work Mr. Bar- 
ringer had an important share, and if it had not been for him, 
the North Carolina Railroad Company would in all probability 
not have been incorporated, at least at that time; although the 
same might be said of quite a number of other gentlemen, par- 
ticularly Mr. Ashe, Senator Murchison and Speaker Graves of 
the Senate. At the next election, Mr. Barringer was chosen to 
represent his county in the State Senate, but after the expiration 
of his term of service as State Senator he practically withdrew 
from politics and devoted himself to the successful practice of 
his profession until the war. 

Being a Whig, and strongly attached to the Union, and con- 
sequently opposed to the Democratic Party and all its policies, 
he in i860 became a Whig elector on the Bell and Everett ticket, 
and was so outspoken in his convictions that secession ^yould be 
accompanied by a war, which would prove the fiercest and bloodi- 
est in modern time, and would involve the institution of slavery 
itself, that he for a time became very unpopular on account of 
these views and the bold and fearless manner in which he opposed 
the secession movement. Being a man who always and under all 



RUFUS BARRINGER 119 

circumstances adhered to his convictions, regardless of their popu- 
larity, he was not in the least perturbed or shaken in the stand 
he had taken on account of this temporary unpopularity. 

He had married Miss Eugenia Morrison, a daughter of Rev. 
R. H. Morrison, and a sister of Mrs. Stonewall Jackson, Mrs. 
General D. H. Hill and Mrs. Judge A. C. Avery; and when the 
war, which he had foreseen and used his most strenuous efforts 
to prevent, came on, he promptly raised a company of cavalry, 
which became Company F, First North Carolina Cavalry, and 
received his commission as captain of this company on the i6th of 
May, 1861. His regiment, under Colonel Robert Ransom, was so 
well drilled that it became widely known as the best cavalry 
regiment in the Confederate service. At first it was assigned 
to Hampton's brigade as the Ninth Regiment of North Carolina 
troops, and it served under that distinguished commander until 
the formation of the North Carolina Brigade of Cavalry. In 1862 
General Jackson proposed to organize some light troops for 
offensive action, and offered Barringer the position of quarter- 
master of the division on his staff, which offer was refused, as 
he preferred to remain with his own company along the fighting 
lines. On August 26, 1863, Captain Barringer became major of 
the regiment, and three months later its lieutenant-colonel. On 
the 9th of September, 1863, the Ninth and three other North 
Carolina cavalry regiments were organized as the North Carolina 
Cavalry Brigade, under the command of General Lawrence S. 
Baker; but on the 28th of the same month Colonel James B. 
Gordon of the Ninth was commissioned as brigadier-general, and 
took command of the brigade. Colonel Barringer shared in all 
of the fortunes of his regiment; and at length, in June, 1864, was 
commissioned brigadier-general, and succeeded to the command 
of the brigade, in which position he continued until he was cap- 
tured on the 3d of April, 1865, on the retreat to Appomatox. 

In an old paper there is found an item headed "Won't Go to 
Congress." "While others are trying to get out of the army by 
being elected to Congress, Major Rufus Barringer refuses to go to 
Congress and will remain with the army. Major Barringer is 



I20 NORTH CAROLINA 



right, for the country needs all able-bodied men in the field." We 
copy his letter. 

"Orange Court House, Va., Oct. 17, 1863. 

"I have recently received numerous solicitations to become a candidate 
for Congress in the Eighth District. These solicitations I have uniformly 
declined. Within the last few days I have learned that many of my friends 
still propose voting for me, whether a candidate or not. Whilst I am 
deeply grateful to all who have thus manifested an interest in my behalf 
and propose giving me this testimonial of their confidence, I deem it due 
alike to them and to myself to state that for many reasons I much prefer 
my name should not be used. 

"I entered the army from a sense of duty alone, counting the cost and 
knowing the sacrifices. 

"Our great object is not yet obtained, and I do not consider it con- 
sistent with my obligations here to accept any civil or political office 
during the war. I think it better for those in service to stand by their 
colors, whilst those at home should all unite in a cordial and earnest 
support of the authorities in feeding, clothing and otherwise sustaining 
the gallant men (and their families) who are fighting not only for our 
rights, but for the safety of our homes and firesides. My chief desire is 
to see all party bickerings allayed. The army is not faint-hearted and 
will nobly perform its duty to the country. 

"If croakers, grumblers and growlers, who torment themselves and all 
around them with imaginary evils, could only lay aside their fears ; if 
hoarders, speculators and money makers could only be educated to forget 
their selfish ends for a season; if conscripts, skulkers and deserters could 
only be got to their commands and all come up to the work like patriots 
and men, the army, by the blessing of God, would soon secure us victory 
and peace. Oh ! that those men would reflect upon the error of their 
way and open their hearts to the call of their bleeding country. My 
prayers are that all dissensions amongst us in North Carolina may be 
healed, and that headed by our sworn and chosen leaders, President Davis 
and Governor Vance, the party, appealing alike to our duty, our honor, 
our interest and our safety, would now consecrate themselves to their 
country. 

"RuFus Barringer." 

General Barringer was in seventy-six engagements, was 
wounded three times, most severely at Brandy Station, and on 
two other occasions had his horse killed under him. He was 
conspicuous at the battles of Willis Church, at Brandy Station, 



RUFUS BARRINGER 121 

Auburn Mills and at Buckland Races, where he led the charge; 
at Davis's Farm, where he was the sole commander, and at 
Reams's Station, where he commanded the division of cavalry. 
His brigade added to its laurels at Chamberlain Run, March 31, 
1865, when it forded a stream one hundred yards wide, saddle- 
girth deep, under a galling fire, and drove back a division of 
Federal cavalry, this being the last decisive Confederate victory 
on Virginia soil. Three days later, at Namozine Church, while he 
was making efforts to extricate one of his regiments from a 
perilous position, he was taken prisoner by a party of scouts dis- 
guised as Confederates,* and was sent to City Point, along with 
General Ewell and General Custis Lee, who had also fallen into 
the hands of the enemy. President Lincoln was at City Point, 
and asked that General Barringer be presented to him, remarking, 
"You know I have never seen a real, live Rebel general in uni- 
form." General Barringer was detained a prisoner at Fort Dela- 
ware until August, 1865, at which time he was released, thus 
closing a most enviable and brilliant military career, which was 
punctuated with many acts of unsurpassed bravery and heroism, 
in which he was noted for uniform fidelity to his superiors and 
kindness and consideration for those subject to his command. 
Though a strict disciplinarian, he was ever mindful of the wants 
and necessities of his soldiers, and was tireless in his efforts to 
lighten their burdens and relieve them of every hardship possible. 
There is little wonder, therefore, that his old soldiers, who fol- 
lowed him through the smoke of battle in seventy-six engage- 
ments, when the war ended and they returned to paths of peace, 
continued to entertain the highest regard and warmest affection 
for their old commander even up to the day of his death. Having 
been an ardent Whig prior to the war, and imbibed the principles 
and policies of that party, it was not surprising, after the war 

*In the Pittsburg Press, February, 189s, Scout Archibald Rowland gives 
an interesting account of the capture (republished in the Charlotte News, 
February 13, 1895), and Sergeant J. E. McCabe, of the Seventeenth 
Pennsylvania Cavalry, also published an account in the Philadelphia Times, 
July, 1881 (republished in the Farmer and Mechanic, September S, 1883). 



122 NORTH CAROLINA 

closed, that General Barringer did not take kindly to the principles 
and policies of the Democratic Party, his old political enemy. 
Besides, he was thoroughly convinced that the South, in its then 
crushed and impoverished condition, could no longer afford, even 
in the political arena, to antagonize the principles and policies of 
the Republican Party, believing that a conciliatory policy on the 
part of the Southern people was the surest means of speedily 
bringing about a reconciliation between the two late warring 
sections ; therefore, entertaining such convictions, those who knew 
General Barringer were not surprised when he espoused the cause 
of the Republican Party and advocated its reconstruction policy 
in the South, for he always had the courage of his convictions, 
irrespective of whether those convictions happened for the time 
being to be popular or otherwise, and it made but little difference 
to him, in pursuing the course he did in this respect, that his 
elder brtJther, General Daniel Barringer, who was chairman of 
the Democratic State Committee in 1872, and his other warm 
and lifelong friends, so widely and radically differed from him in 
their political views and party affiliations. 

On returning from the war, General Barringer moved to 
Charlotte, where he again took up the practice of the law, being 
associated with the late Judge James W. Osborne, and continued 
his legal pursuits until he retired from the active practice in 1884, 
having in the meantime, as the result of unfailing industry, energy 
and fidelity to his profession, acquired more than a sufficiency 
of this world's goods to enable him for the remainder of his life 
to pursue the more peaceful and quiet paths of a private citizen. 

In 1875 the constitutional convention was called, but the people 
were so apprehensive of the results of conventions that the move- 
ment was regarded as of doubtful propriety; and at the election 
so close was the vote that the two parties tied in the body. Gen- 
eral Barringer having been elected a member of that body as a 
Republican from Mecklenburg, a Democratic county. Subse- 
quently, in 1880, his party nominated him to the office of lieu- 
tenant-governor, but he shared the fate of his associates in their 
defeat at the polls, after which he permanently retired, and became 



RUFUS BARRINGER 123 

more or less independent in politics, having voted in 1888 for 
the Cleveland electors, and at other times frequently voting the 
Democratic ticket, or a part thereof. 

General Barringer was an able, learned, pure and honorable 
man. In the war he had manifested a heroic spirit; no one 
excelled him in personal bravery or in his devotion to the Con- 
federate cause when once he had drawn his sword in defense of 
his country. When peace was declared, he returned from the 
war with the same intrepid spirit and lofty purpose to do that 
which he thought was right, and even his most bitter political 
opponents could not truthfully say that in his political career he 
was actuated by other than the most lofty patriotism and unselfish 
ambitions. In fact, his career as a Confederate soldier gave 
earnest of what might be expected of him as a private citizen, 
and no private or political act of his ever marred or tarnished the 
luster which attached to the name of General Rufus Barringer, 
the commander of one of the bravest and most daring cavalry 
brigades in the Confederate army. General Barringer, with active 
and acute mind, had a fondness for literature, and in 1881 wrote 
a series of cavalry sketches, describing the battles of Five Forks 
and other notable engagements, and made other valuable contri- 
butions to historical literature, having also written sketches known 
as "The Dutch Side" and "The -Battle of Ramseur's Mill." He 
also made most valuable contributions to the State's history in 
writing "The History of the Act Incorporating the North Caro- 
lina Railroad," and his history of the Ninth Regiment for the 
Regimental Histories of the State. 

On the death of his first wife, General Barringer married Miss 
Rosalie Chunn, of Asheville, and after her death he married Miss 
Margaret Long, of Orange County, who, together with his three 
sons. Dr. Paul B. Barringer (a child by his first wife), Rufus C. 
Barringer (a child by his second wife), and Osmond L. Bar- 
ringer (a child by his third wife), survive him. He died on 
February 3, 1895. 

General Barringer was an active and consistent member of the 
Presbyterian Church, and was always a liberal contributor to 



124 NORTH CAROLINA 

charitable and religious causes. He had travelled much, and 
profited by his experience abroad. He was always favorable to 
progressive ideas that promised an advantage to the people of 
his State and immediate section. He was an early and ardent 
advocate of temperance reform and industrial education, and 
took a sincere pleasure in being a trustee of the North Carolina 
Cojlege of Agriculture and Mechanical Arts. And, being largely 
interested in his agricultural operations, he sought to promote 
successful and profitable farming by others. He was influential 
in establishing the graded schools at Charlotte, and also made 
valuable donations to the first library established in that city. 
Indeed, in every walk in life he was a useful and esteemed citizen, 
but his chief virtues were his faith in the God of the Bible, his 
love for his family and his stern belief in the rigid enforcement 
of the law, by the means of which he believed that peace and 
happiness to all the people could best be secured. He showed 
his deep-seated religious convictions by his always munificent and 
ungrudging support of his church, as well as all other worthy 
religious causes. He exhibited his family love by providing that 
his handsome residence should be kept in the Barringer family 
as a common home for his wife and children and their descend- 
ants as long as they should desire it, and his whole life was an 
example of his conviction that the majesty of the law should 
always and under all circumstances be upheld, and that those 
who were guilty of violating it should be surely and swiftly pun- 
ished, not for the mere sake of punishment, but in order that 
bad men should thus be made to respect it and good men thereby 
protected. 

E. T. Cansler. 




^ {f. /^a/m^a^ f-> 




VICTOR CLAY BARRINGER 




^ICTOR BARRINGER, the youngest child of 
General Paul Barringer and Elizabeth Brandon, 
his wife, was born at "Poplar Grove," the 
family home, March 29, 1827; he was baptized 
by the Rev. John Reck as Victor Barringer, and 
did not assume the name of "Clay" until, as a 
boy, he visited a brother then in Congress and heard Henry Clay 
speak. He was educated in Concord, but in 1843 he was sent to 
Gettysburg College, Pennsylvania, where he remained till 1845, 
when he entered the University of North Carolina, from which 
institution he was graduated with the class of 1848. While at 
"Chapel Hill" he early became the president of the Dialectic 
Society, and his farewell address before that body when relin- 
quishing the gavel was long remembered as a masterpiece of 
youthful oratory. In 1848, after graduation, he at once began 
the study of law with his oldest brother, D. M. Barringer, at 
that time a member of Congress. These studies were interrupted, 
however, by the appointment of his brother, in 1849, as American 
Minister to Spain. Victor Barringer was secretary of legation 
and private secretary to his brother in Madrid till 1854. During 
his stay there he wrote a most interesting series of "Letters from 
Spain," which were published in The Pilot of Concord, then 
edited by his cousin, Adolphus Miller. Returning to North Caro- 
lina, he took up the practice of law at Concord, but in a year or so 



126 NORTH CAROLINA 

he was elected professor of belles-lettres in Davidson College, 
North Carolina. The outbreak of the Civil War soon called him 
from these pleasant labors, however, and he left his chair to serve 
as a State senator in the legislature of 1860-61, in which he urged 
that a State convention should be convened to deal with the great 
crisis. He then accepted a commission as major in the First 
North Carolina Cavalry, then commanded by Colonel Robert 
Ransom. He served with his regiment only a few weeks in the 
summer of 1862, in the battles around Petersburg, when failing 
health compelled him to return to civil life. Throughout the 
period of the Civil War he lived quietly at Concord practicing 
his profession when his feeble health allowed. That Judge Bar- 
ringer was not able to remain at the front was a great cross to 
him, as he was by no means a faint-hearted advocate of the cause 
of his State. This was clearly shown in his reception and hos- 
pitable treatment of President Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet in 
April, 1865. When the chief of the fast failing Confederacy left 
Richmond just before the evacuation and made his way silently 
southward, the early end of the cause was apparent to all. Under 
these circumstances Judge Barringer received President Davis and 
entertained him for a night and more ; and subsequently followed 
him to give useful information and counsel. In a letter written 
from Alexandria, Egypt, and published in the Ballot, Novem- 
ber 8, 1886, he describes in full the details of Mr. Davis's stay, and 
it is thought appropriate to quote a few extracts from this letter 
regarding Mr. Lincoln's assassination. ''1 had been careful to 
advise the citizens generally of the President's arrival, and to 
request them to call on him between 10 and 11 a.m. A few 
only — if I am not mistaken, not exceeding half a dozen, among 
whom I recall Mr. Allison, Colonel Long and Mr. C. Phifer — 
came into the house and paid their personal respects to Mr. Davis ; 
but on the opposite side of the street a large crowd gathered to 
gaze curiously at the fallen chieftain. He talked freely and 
genially with all comers, but maintained a solicitous silence about 
the future of the war. Once only, I remember, he expressed the 
hope that General Johnston would not surrender — an event which 



VICTOR CLAY BARRINGER 127 

was then actually transpiring, if it had not already taken place. 
He alluded vaguely to the possibility of continued hostilities be- 
yond the Mississippi. I mentioned a rumor that Mr. Lincoln had 
been assassinated. He did not credit the rumor; there could be 
no motive, he said, for such a crime. He was entirely indisposed 
to bewail or blame the past, but rather looked forward to the dark 
and shadowy future with a manly heart. At 1 1 o'clock lunch was 
served. Soon after the whole party, with many expressions of 
thanks, took leave of us. Mr. Davis mounted his horse with a 
spring that is distinctly imprinted on my memory, betokening a 
man who, despite years, feeble health and anxieties, seemed still 
to have on him the dew of youth. The party rode away without 
a cheer, a wave of the hand or any signal of respect on the part 
of the crowd. I suppose none was felt, for men seldom respect 
the fallen. Soon confirmation came of Mr. Lincoln's assassina- 
tion. Viewing the altered situation which this event was likely 
to produce, I went immediately to Charlotte, accompanied by Dr. 
Logan of Charleston, an army surgeon, who was staying with me 
at Concord. We went in a carriage by the country road. I called, 
on Mr. Davis. He was lodging with a Mr. Bates, who had, he 
said, hospitably given him shelter. He was occupying, however, 
at the time of my call, a small room (at Colonel William John- 
son's) as a business office, near where the First National Bank 
now stands. I found Mr. Benjamin and Mr. Breckinridge with 
him. He was by no means in a melancholy humor, but easy and 
chatty rather. I fancy that he saw his path clearer — that the end 
had come and he had made up his mind to face it. This fancy 
became a settled conviction before I left him. Alluding to Mr. 
Lincoln's death, the thing uppermost in every mind, he declared 
it to be an unmeasured calamity in every point of view. He had 
become convinced that the spirit of the South was broken. Fur- 
ther resistance by armed force would be criminal. He touched 
delicately on the aloofness of the people in regard to himself, as 
manifested everywhere since the disaster around Richmond. But 
he excused it on the ground of undefined fears in the presence 
of a probable wreck of the cause. Yet it was proof that resistance 



128 NORTH CAROLINA 

was no longer possible. He talked at considerable length, gently 
toward all, with one exception. He avowed that he had little or 
no faith in President Johnson." 

In 1868 Mr. Barringer was appointed by the governor of 
the State a member of the Code Commission of North Caro- 
lina, to adjust the laws of the State to the Code of Civil Pro- 
cedure under the new constitution, and was one of the three 
authors of the first Code of Civil Procedure for North 
Carolina. 

A few years later he was chosen one of the commissioners to 
reduce the United States statutes at large into the compact form 
of the present "Revised Statutes of the United States." Just 
about the time this work was completed, the Khedive of Egypt 
(Ismail Pasha) applied to General Grant, requesting the appoint- 
ment of some "justice of high standing, linguistic attainments, 
familiar with Continental life," to represent America at the Inter- 
national Court at Alexandria, Egypt. General Grant, having 
known Mr. Barringer during his three years' stay in Washington 
on the Code Commission, appointed him, in 1874, as the first 
American representative on this bench He served two terms of 
ten years each in Egypt, spending his long vacation each year in 
European or Oriental travel. 

In 1882, during the Arabi Pasha Rebellion, his house in Alex- 
andria was destroyed, and with it a well-chosen collection of 
Oriental curios and the all but finished manuscript of a work on 
"The Relation of the Mussulman and the Roman Law." As most 
of his dearly bought reference works were destroyed' with his 
manuscript, he never attempted to reproduce this work. He 
visited the United States but once during his life in Egypt, but 
in 1894, when nearly three score and ten, he resolved to return 
permanently to America, "ere too late to unite the threads of 
severed associations." When he left Egypt, he was awarded, for 
honorable and efficient service, the highest decoration given by 
the Khedive, the Order of the Osmanieh. 

He married Maria Massey, daughter of George Massey and 
Maria McKesson, of North Carolina. She proved a most devoted 



VICTOR CLAY BARRINGER 129 

wife and helpmate. To the great sorrow of both, no children 
blessed this union. 

In the words of a friend (formerly United States Consul-Gen- 
eral in Egypt) found in a tribute to his memory, "Justice Bar- 
ringer lived in Egypt twenty years, and during that whole time 
enjoyed the confidence and had the appreciation of all those with 
whom he came in contact, whether officially or socially. He was 
a jurist of high ability, a scholar of considerable attainments, an 
entertaining conversationalist, and, above all, a loyal, intense 
American, who dignified the position he held, and his decisions 
were always regarded with respect." 

Of goodly lineage, being descended from a well-known and influ- 
ential family of his native State, North Carolina, Judge Barringer 
was throughout a long life an earnest Christian. Of great de- 
cision and independence of thought, he was singularly genial and 
affectionate in nature, and in nothing was this more strikingly 
manifested than in his devotion to children of all ages and his 
enjoyment of their love. He lived but two years after his return 
to the United States, and died at Washington, District of Colum- 
bia, May 27, 1896, and is buried in Rock Creek Cemetery, near 
that city. 

Dr. Paul B. Barringer. 
D. M. Barringer, Jr. 






JOHN ALSTON BARRINGER 

fOHN ALSTON BARRINGER was born on 
the 30th day of August, 185 1, at the old Alston 
homestead, in Chatham County, four miles west 
of Pittsboro, North Carolina. He is the first 
child of Rev. William Barringer and Lavinia 
Margaret Alston. Paul Brandon Barringer of 
Oxford, Mississippi, is the only other living member of this family. 
Full sketches of his father, his grandfather and his great-grand- 
father appear in this same volume. 

But, in addition to the splendid sketch of Rev. William Bar- 
ringer, by Rev. Dr. Leonidas W. Crawford, this writer is con- 
strained to say that Rev. William Barringer, whom he knew inti- 
mately and most lovingly as "Uncle Billy" for more than twenty- 
three years, and as his mother's best-loved brother, was one of 
the most powerful preachers in all respects he ever heard; he 
was the most lovable man he ever saw ; his great soul was full 
to overflowing with love for all mankind, inspired by "the great 
Christ-passion to redeem;'' his love for "little children" was 
supreme; he was a Christ man; and all the great audience who 
heard the funeral sermon over his dead body deeply and sadly 
felt the truth of the speaker's kingly tribute, "There is a prince 
and a great man fallen this day in Israel." 

One of the best and most attractive features of this great bio- 
graphical work is its genealogies. They must be verified by indis- 



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-■7? iff £" e:^ l^/^'O'iis S3ro /'T,'' 



Jti^ ^/^, 



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■'L T^n Ts&p/TV" ^-^iA^ 



JOHN ALSTON BARRINGER 131 

putable records before finding a place in this work, and this for- 
ever establishes their accuracy, and gives to all future descendants 
of those named herein an absolutely truthful and unimpeachable 
family record, which will last when all other earthly monuments 
of brass or marble have fallen into decay, by their most careful 
preservation in the homes of illustrious North Carolinians and in 
all of the great libraries of our State and elsewhere. 

Mr. John Alston Barringer, with proper pride, traces pater- 
nally his genuine German lineage back to the Black Forest 
(Schwarzwald) Mountains of Wiirttemberg, where great men 
grew, and whence came the Schwarzwalders, Blackforesters or 
Blackwelders, of whom was his great-grandmother, a patriotic 
heroine of the Revolution, Catherine Blackwelder, who lies buried 
beside her son. General Paul Barringer, and his wife, Elizabeth 
Brandon, in the old Lutheran Cemetery in Concord, North Caro- 
lina. A splendid ancestry in its antiquity and in its "fruits" of 
men and women, by which an ancestry as well as a religion is best 
known. And this, with the English Brandons, of whom was his 
father's mother, makes a paternal origin of the highest and best 
character. 

The ancestry of the Alstons is unsurpassed in its antiquity and 
otherwise. Its history is fully given in a valuable volume entitled 
"The Alstons and Allstons of North and South Carolina, com- 
piled from English, Colonial and Family Records, by Joseph A. 
Groves, M.D., Selma, Alabama," 1901. 

John Alston Barringer's mother, Lavinia. Margaret Alston, was 
the fifth child of John Jones Alston (born 1792) and Adaline 
Williams. John Alston, the first ancestor of Mr. Barringer who 
came to America, was the first child of John Alston and Anne 
Wallis, daughter of an illustrious father, and was baptized at 
Flemersham, County Bedford, England, December 5, 1673 ; this 
John Alston was the fourth son of John Alston (1610) and 
Dorothy Temple. The Alstons claim, by record, their ancestry 
back to time of King Edward L, 1272-1307. 

Through Dorothy Temple, whom John Alston married at Odell 
Castle, Bedfordshire, England, January 4, 1634, daughter of Sir 



132 NORTH CAROLINA 

John Temple and Dorothy Lee, the Alstons, by official English 
records, truthfully trace their genealogy to Leofric, Earl of 
Leicester (1043), and his wife, Lady Godiva (Encyclopaedia 
Britannica, 9th ed.. Vol. VL, p. 530), to whom Tennyson has 
exquisitely given "an everlasting name" for her ride through 
"Convent town," "clothed on with chastity," because she 

. . . "loved the people well, 
And loathed to see them overtax'd." 

This writer is fully and sadly aware of the existence of con- 
temptible people whose only worth is in their ancestry. He fully 
concurs in John G. Saxe's scornful satire on the false 

. . . "pride of birth, 
Among our 'fierce Democracie'!" 

But a great lineage well lived up to is a great heritage. To 
worthy men or women it is an inspiration to deeds that crown 
them as decorations of honor. To the unworthy it is a stigma of 
disgrace and shame. To be of "the house and lineage of David" 
was a seal of heavenly prophecy and a glorious "gift from above" 
to our Saviour Christ and to the Virgin Mary, whose "seed of the 
woman" was to bruise the head of the serpent, the soiling trail 
of which has stained all genealogies. They must each be of the 
tribe of Judah and of the house and lineage of David. None of 
the other great genealogies of Israel, running forty-two genera- 
tions back to Abraham, would do. This is God's stamp of ap- 
proval on good and great genealogies. 

John Alston Barringer has lived worthily of his "house and 
lineage," and thereby he honors it as it honors him. And this is 
the more creditable to him because his life has been, of his own 
choice, more private than public. He is a magnificent specimen 
of physical manhood; like the Alstons, tall and erect; like both 
families of his origin, muscular and powerful. And withal, 
handsome. 

The Alstons were among the wealthiest families of the State 



JOHN ALSTON BARRINGER 133 

before the war, especially in lands and negroes, to whom they 
were always generous and kind. In all that makes up a splendid 
race of men and women the Alstons of North Carolina have ever 
been among the very best. 

Mr. Barringer received his primary education in Greensboro, 
North Carolina, to which town his father moved in 1858 ; entered 
Trinity College in 1868, and graduated thence in 1872 ; he studied 
law under Judge Dillard in Greensboro for one year, then became 
a student of the great Pearson Law School, under Chief Justice 
Pearson, at Richmond Hill, North Carolina, where he remained 
one year, and was licensed to practice law in 1874. He traveled 
considerably for two years, and began the practice of law in State 
and Federal courts in 1876, at Greensboro. In November, 1884, 
he was elected to represent Guilford County in the House of the 
General Assembly of 1885, in which responsible position he was 
active and prominent, both on committees and in the work of the 
House. In 1886 he was elected mayor of Greensboro, and re- 
elected in 1893. For many years he was chairman of the Demo- 
cratic Executive Committee of the Fifth Congressional District. 
Was a Cleveland elector in 1892, and canvassed, with great credit, 
this district in joint debate with Hon. W. P. Bynum, Jr., one of 
the best and strongest men in the Republican Party. He has, 
however, rather eschewed politics, except as he felt that duty to 
his party and State demanded his services, preferring the quiet 
and peaceful life of his beautiful and happy home in Greensboro 
and the practice of his profession to the uncertainty of success 
and frequent ingratitude experienced in a political career. He is 
a learned lawyer, an eloquent speaker, especially strong before 
a jury, and has amassed a handsome estate solely by hard work 
in the practice of law. 

Mr. Barringer was married on the 15th day of September, 1886, 
to Miss Martha Moderwell Sloan, who is the daughter of Robert 
Moderwell Sloan, who was born near Lexington, Virginia, 
March 22, 1812. His father, John Sloan, came to America in 1770, 
directly from Ireland, and settled near Lexington, Virginia, where 
he married Mary Virginia Shields. Mrs. Barringer's father came 



134 NORTH CAROLINA 

to Greensboro when thirteen years of age, at the death of his 
father, and lived with his uncle, Robert Moderwell ; he married 
Sarah Paisley, August 31, 1836, who was the daughter of Rev. 
William D. Paisley, a distinguished divine, who founded the first 
Presbyterian Church in Greensboro, and who was the son of 
Major, and afterward Colonel John Paisley, a brave and valiant 
soldier of the American Revolution (pp. 75 and 81, Wheeler's 
"History of North Carolina"). Rev. W. D. Paisley married 
Frances, daughter of General Alexander Mebane, of the well- 
known Mebane family of the Revolution (pp. 364 and 365, 
Caruthers' "History of North Carolina," and Wheeler, p. 333). 

Mr. and Mrs. Barringer have only one child, an interesting 
and intelligent little daughter, born November 5, 1893, and named 
Frances Sloan Barringer. He and his wife are both Presbyterians. 

The influence of both his father and his mother was beautiful and 
beneficial on his intellectual life, and, with a sweet memory of his 
mother, he says, "My mother's influence was particularly strong 
on my moral and spiritual life," which is always the tribute of a 
loyal, loving son to a good mother. 

Now in the full vigor and strength of all his mental and physical 
powers, Mr. Barringer's past and present foretell a prosperous, 
peaceful and beautiful old age and earthly end. 

Paul B. Means. 





; W'/V-^'"^ 3. 3r^ A^y^ 





PAUL BRANDON BARRINGER 




TAUL BRANDON BARRINGER was born in 
Concord, North Carolina, on the 13th day of 
February, 1857. He is the only living child of 
General Rufus Barringer and Eugenia Mor- 
rison. 

Full sketches of his father, his grandfather, 
General Paul Barringer, and his great-grandfather, John Paul 
Barringer, appear in this same volume. 

His mother was a very beautiful woman in her physical appear- 
ance and Christian character. She was the daughter of Rev. Dr. 
Robert Hall Morrison, one of the most intellectual men of North 
Carolina, a Presbyterian minister, and the first president of David- 
son College. Her mother was Mary Graham, daughter of General 
Joseph Graham of Revolutionary fame, and a sister of William A. 
Graham, who was governor of North Carolina, United States 
senator, secretary of the navy under President Fillmore, nominee 
of the Whig Party for Vice-President with General Winfield 
Scott, trustee of the University of North Carolina, etc. Mary 
Graham's mother was Isabella Davidson, a kinswoman of General' 
William Lee Davidson, who was killed at the battle of Cowan's 
Ford during the Revolution, and for whom Davidson College 
was named. Eugenia Morrison and three of her sisters were re- 
markable in their marriages : one married General "Stonewall" 



136 NORTH CAROLINA 

Jackson, one General D. H. Hill, and one Hon. A. C. Avery, 
justice of the Supreme Court of North Carolina. 

When asked once "What was the first strong impulse to strive 
for such prizes in life as he has won?" Dr. Barringer answered, 
"Family pride." And with such an ancestry as he has on paternal 
and maternal sides, well may he have thus answered, and right 
well, also, has he exemplified noblesse oblige. 

Dr. Barringer's mother died when he was only two years of 
age, an immeasurable and irreparable loss to any child if the 
mother be, as his was, a genuine Christian woman, and filled with 
the right conceptions and ideals of motherhood. His father and 
his uncle, Victor Barringer, were both superb disciplinarians, and 
under their training from his earliest infancy, the boy learned 
and was saturated with a high, rigid sense of obedience. Thus 
his powers of self-control and intense application became firmly 
fixed in childhood, and he grew up, as such trained children 
always will, the master of every disturbing environment, and 
drilled to see and seize all opportunities for the fulfillment of what 
he "purposed in his heart." 

His ancestors on both sides were strong and full of health, 
and he thus inherited a powerful physique. His boyhood was 
spent in the homes of his father and uncle, Victor Barringer, in 
the then small village of Concord, and in the country homes of 
kinsfolk. With plenty of open-air exercise, he grew up robust 
and "tough as a pine knot ;" and all through life has realized the 
benefits and blessings of inherited health and strength. 

He was educated in a primary school at Concord, then in the 
celebrated Bingham School at Mebane, North Carolina, at the 
Kenmore University School in Virginia and the University of 
Virginia. His medical education was obtained in the Medical 
Department of the University of Virginia and in that of the Uni- 
• versity of the City of New York, being graduated from the former 
in 1877 and from the latter in 1878, with the degree of M.D. from 
both. Soon after his return from New York he located at Dallas, 
North Carolina, and practiced medicine some three years in that 
town and vicinity. 



PAUL BRANDON BARRINGER 137 

On the 27th day of December, 1882, Dr. Barringer married 
Miss Nannie Irene Hannah of Charlotte County, Virginia, the 
daughter of George Cunningham Hannah and Ann Eliza Sprag- 
gins. Her father was the son of George Hannah, who was a 
soldier of 1812, and his wife, Lucy Morton. Lucy Morton was 
the daughter of Colonel William Morton of Virginia, who dis- 
tinguished himself at the battle of Guilford Court-house, 
March 15, 1781. 

Dr. and Mrs. Barringer have ten children : Rufus Hannah, 
born November 18, 1883; Anne Maria, born November 11, 1885; 
Paul Brandon, born August 28, 1887; George Hannah, born 
July I, 1889; Victor Clay, born June 17, 1891 ; Margaret Venable, 
born February 8, 1893; Eugenia Morrison, born March 11, 1895; 
Thomas Cunningham, born November 19, 1896; Alma Worth, 
born September 15, 1898; and John Barringer, born Septem- 
ber 24, 1901. "Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of 
them." 

Before his marriage Dr. Barringer went abroad, and spent some 
time in medical study in England and on the Continent. In 1884 
he located at Davidson, North Carolina, where for almost a 
century has stood, "as a city set on a hill," that splendid old insti- 
tution of learning, Davidson College, named after a Revolutionary 
kinsman, and of which his maternal grandfather was the first 
president. 

The writer of this sketch, when asked by the publisher to pre- 
pare it, requested Dr. W. J. Martin, M.D., Ph.D., professor of 
chemistry at Davidson College, to furnish him a paper on "Dr., 
Barringer's life at Davidson." Dr. Martin kindly and generously 
did so, and as this paper is so far superior to anything that this 
writer could produce, he adopts it verbatim, as follows : 

"On his arrival at Davidson, Dr. Barringer began at once the practice 
of his profession as physician to the College, professors' families, the 
people of the village and of the country for miles around. Of sound 
scholastic training and attainments, as well as thoroughly equipped in the 
medical profession, both by study in this country and abroad, he soon 
proved himself to be a master in his line. In no way was this shown in 
his practice more strikingly than in his resourcefulness in remedial mat- 



138 NORTH CAROLINA 

ters. When one remedy failed him he never seemed at a loss for an- 
other and still others to accomplish the end desired. I have noticed this 
power again and again not only in Dr. Barringer's general practice, but 
in his treatment of members of our immediate family. Nor can one 
forget how, when his utrrtost skill was put to severest test in desperate 
cases, everything else gave way to the fight he made for the patient's 
life. In the practice of his profession there was no grand-stand play. 
To trivial or unimportant cases he hardly seemed to give the attention 
that the patient would sometime have liked to have been flattered with, 
but let a case of serious nature and threatening to life arise, and his whole 
soul was given to the battle. As a natural result, it was not long before 
he had command of nearly all the practice of the vicinity. 

"This did not satisfy him, however, for he felt that within there were 
better things calling him to the work to which his life has since been 
devoted, the work of a teacher. 

"In the fall of 1886 he opened his preparatory school of medicine with 
four students, and he continued to conduct it, in winter and summer 
terms, for the next few years, till he was called to another and a higher 
field of labor as a professor in the medical department of the University 
of Virginia, his old alma mater. During these years his classes increased 
till they numbered some twenty-five or more students. It was my good 
fortune to be all of one summer and part of another under Dr. Barringer's 
teaching, and I think I know whereof I speak when I say that his teach- 
ing was of an unusually high order. It was not his orderliness and punc- 
tuality, for at that time a general practitioner, he was not especially 
systematic in his methods nor punctual in his habits; it was not that he 
was a laborious student and worked with infinite care over each point 
presented to his class, for at that time he was not apparently a hard 
student, and to his students he never seemed to need hard studying. To 
us, as students, he only seemed to need to rapidly read a subject to be 
able to grasp its fundamentals and lay them before his class so plainly, 'that 
a wayfaring man, though a fool, could see it clearly!' I think that he 
was a 'born teacher,' for certainly he was a great teacher in those early 
days of his life work. He made things clear, he cut out all the padding 
and gave the student the meat in such shape that it could be readily 
digested and assimilated, and his students left his hand well grounded 
in the fundamentals of medicine. So true is this, that it is my impression 
that he won his call to the University of Virginia mainly on the char- 
acter of the preparation of his students, most of whom he sent to the 
University of Virginia to pursue their course. This preparatory school 
was the beginning of the present North Carolina Medical College at 
Davidson; a school now numbering nearly a hundred students. Dr. Bar- 
ringer left Davidson in the fall of 1889, and although he had been a 



PAUL BRANDON BARRINGER 139 

resident of the place for only a few years, he left there, to the universal 
regret of the people. He had won their confidence and regard in no slight 
measure. Every one rejoiced in his promotion, and numerous were the 
strong testimonials written to the University authorities in his behalf. 
I am aware that I am speaking of Dr. Barringer personally, but I cannot 
refrain from the simple statement that the doctor's gracious and cul- 
tured wife had won her way, equally with her husband, to the hearts 
of the people and shared equally with him their sincere regrets at the 
parting. It was my good fortune to continue the study of medicine at the 
University of Virginia, and afterward to spend four years of my life as 
an instructor there, and it is a very indifferent expression of what I feel 
to say, that I can never forget the cordial way in which I was made to 
feel at home in their interesting household. It was my University home, 
and well do I remember the Sabbath afternoons and evenings spent with 
them and their children. 

"Dr. Barringer's life at Davidson was short, but in that it saw him 
launched in teaching work it was important. It was here that he first 
caught his inspiration as a teacher, it was here that he made the begin- 
ning of his real life work and laid the foundation for his reputation for 
success in that work. 

"Of his versatility, his wide information, remarkable memory, marked 
conversational powers, genial companionship, it is not my province to 
speak. Certainly he was gifted in all these respects. I was to write 
simply of his life at Davidson, and however inadequately it has been 
done, the writing has been a pleasure. Only one line more. It was 
my peculiar pleasure to be a member of the faculty who, with the con- 
sent of the college authorities, conferred on Dr. Barringer, while Chair- 
man of the University of Virginia, the well-deserved degree of LL.D." 

On the iSth day of June, 1889, Dr. Barringer was elected to 
the chair of physiology at the University of Virginia to fill the 
vacancy caused by the death of Dr. J. Lawrence Cabell. Of Dr. 
Barringer's career at this great University, Dr. William A. Lam- 
beth of that institution has kindly furnished the writer a concise 
and comprehensive paper, adopted in full as follows : 

"In the death of Lawrence Cabell, in 1889, the University of Virginia 
lost its most distinguished servant and America a renowned scholar, 
scientist and teacher. To aspire to fill such a vacancy required no small 
amount of courage. However, with a conscious faith in his own equip- 
ment and qualifications, supported by a strong and enduring physical 
strength. Dr. Barringer accepted this responsible position. Whatever 



I40 NORTH CAROLINA 

were the misgivings of his friends or the uneasiness anticipated by the 
friends of the University, they were quickly dispelled by the firmness of 
his grasp upon his duties and the power with which he developed, ex- 
panded and directed his department. His teaching became more and 
more eflfective and impressive, and his courses grew in popularity and 
extended in influence. 

"He became much interested in advancing the clinical teaching here, and 
was the leading spirit in engrafting this feature upon the older estab- 
lished didactic courses, and it was this effort that finally culminated in 
the splendidly equipped modern hospital which now serves the Medical 
Department. 

"Early in his teaching days his warm personality attracted young men, 
and the intercourse thus established soon grew into good fellowship, 
in which he was regarded more like an older brother, to whom each 
could be himself without acting a part, and all without the loss of 
dignity. 

"Dr. Barringer's connection with the University has been coincident 
with a period of expansion and remoulding, — a period during which the 
material University melted into ashes and was rebuilt ; a period when its 
form of government changed from a democratic faculty control to a 
centralized presidential control ; a period during which genius and con- 
structive ability of the rarest kind were indispensable. His administra- 
tive talent and executive abilities had early marked him for a leader here, 
and soon he became the leader in the Reconstruction, the Board of Visi- 
tors again and again making him Chairman of the Faculty and official 
head of the University. During these terms complicated and delicate 
problems were met, solved and adjusted with dispatch, accuracy and 
rare judgment. He has guarded and expanded all those peculiar insti- 
tutions which formed an organic part of the University, and particularly 
is this true of the "honor system," which he was so well qualified to 
advance. His tact and intuitive knowledge of human nature and human 
weakness gave him a natural advantage over most men in dealing with 
so delicate yet so vital an element in the life of this institution. Frank 
in nature, he invited confidence, and without affectation led many young 
men to higher and nobler ideals and conduct. 

"He has in many other ways left his impress upon the character of 
Virginia education which does not end at the University. His creative 
talent and power of organization largely eflfected the present co-ordinated 
relation existing between the public schools and the University. 

"The changes in the material equipment of the institution from a half 
million dollars to a million dollars tested Dr. Barringer's abilities as a 
financier, and here again he was equal to the occasion, and whatever 
clouds threatened they were soon brushed aside. Perhaps no one indi- 



PAUL BRANDON BARRINGER 141 

vidua! has been called upon for effective work in so many fields, — ^teach- 
ing, executive, disciplinary, — all complicated by delicate relationship and 
rendered difficult by custom and indefinite responsibilities and authority. 
"North Carolina in lending one of her most gifted sons to Virginia 
lost his labor, but retained his unfailing loyalty, and in his brilliant 
achievements takes warranted pride. Full of vigor, resourcefulness and 
versatility, he continues to reflect great honor upon his native State and 
to render invaluable service to Virginia and the cause of education." 

Of Dr. Barringer as chairman of the University of Virginia, 
and of his resignation thereof in June, 1903, the Daily Progress 
of Charlottesville, Virginia, June 20, 1903, has the following 
editorial : 

"Seven years ago. Dr. Paul B. Barringer became Chairman of the 
Faculty of the University of Virginia, and from the day of his entrance 
upon the exacting, and often perplexing, duties of that high office until 
the hour of his retirement from it, he labored with his whole strength to 
extend the influence of our great University, to strengthen it, to expand 
it, and to turn to it in even stronger current than before the love of her 
sons scattered all over the world. 

"It was wise to realize as he did that these sons constituted a powerful 
family, whose mental, moral and physical endowments- had made them 
the leading figures in their communities, whether as scholars, scientists, 
professional men, soldiers, statesmen, and that their influence and affec- 
tion exerted in behalf of the University would be of inestimable value in 
enlarging the already vast sphere of its influence. To realize the oppor- 
tunity before him was to put forward every energy to tdke advantage of 
it, and he has filled his seven years as the executive head of the Uni- 
versity with work all directed to this achievement. We think that all 
who know what has been accomplished, who know the difference between 
the conditions then and the conditions now existing, will concede to him 
a larger measure of success than could have been expected. 

"In considering the condition of this institution, it must be remembered 
that while the child of Virginia, commanding the profound affection 
and admiration, and even veneration of the people of this commonwealth, 
the University of Virginia is, as far as the legislatures have been con- 
cerned, almost a disowned child. Nominally, with the State treasury 
behind her, money for bare necessities has had to be wrung from those 
controlling the State's purse, and in all the years of her life she has had 
no pin money, so the burden which Dr. Barringer and his confreres have 
had to bear has been a great one, and his and their achievements become 



142 NORTH CAROLINA 

the more honorable when we realize under what adverse conditions they 
have been won. 

"There have been cares and responsibilities of which the public could 
not judge, because it could not know of them. The relation between the 
chairman and the students and the Faculty, between the students and the 
public, and the intimate association of the students with each other, give 
rise to delicate problems, in the wise solution of which sound sense, good 
feeling and tactful resource are prime and necessary factors. Perhaps 
no other chairman of the Faculty has so well met and disposed of these 
difficulties, and none of his predecessors, it may be confidently averred, 
has left the chairmanship possessing so large a share of the affection of 
the student body. 

"During all these years of toil as chairman, Dr. Barringer has not re- 
laxed his grasp upon the great subject committed to him as a professor 
in the medical department." 

And then upon all this is set the highest possible seal of ap- 
proval by the Board of Visitors and the faculty of the University 
of Virginia, in the following resolutions : 

"At a regular annual meeting of the Board of Visitors held at the Uni- 
versity, June 15th, 1903, the following resolutions were adopted: 

"Resolved, That this Board wishes to, and it does hereby, put on 
record some expression of its high and sincere appreciation of the efficient 
and unselfish manner in which Dr. P. B. Barringer has discharged the 
duties of Chairman of the Faculty during the important and trying period 
in which he has held this position, and to thank him in behalf of the 
Board and the University." 

And later, at a meeting of the Faculty held June 18, 1903, Pro- 
fessor R. H. Dabney presented the following, which was unani- 
mously adopted : 

"In view of the fact that Dr. Barringer has resigned the chairmanship 
of this body. Resolved, That the Faculty joins with the Board of Visitors 
in expressing thanks to him for the ability and faithfulness with which 
he has discharged the duties of his high office during a period full of 
peculiar and unusual difficulties." 

Dr. Barringer had the degree of LL.D. conferred upon him by 
Davidson College, North Carolina, in 1899, and by the University 
of South Carolina in 1904. 



PAUL BRANDON BARRINGER 143 

While chairman of the faculty, he held and still holds the chair 
of physiology in the University of Virginia. He has been a 
member of the Board of Health of that State. He is a member 
of the medical societies of the States of North Carolina and Vir- 
ginia, of the American Medical Association, of the Southern 
Surgical and Gynecological Society, the Tri-State Medical Society 
of Virginia and the Carolinas, of the Elisha Mitchell Scientific 
Society, etc. He is the author of a brochure, "The Venomous 
Reptiles of the United States," which is quoted, and with defer- 
ence, by the curator of the National Museum at Washington; 
and a series of strong pamphlets on "The Race Question," two 
of which especially, "The American Negro : His Past and Future," 
and "Negro Education in the South," excited widespread interest. 

He is a member of the Zeta Psi (Z. ■i.), "The Raven" and 
Nu Sigma Nu (N. 2. N.) fraternities. 

He is a Presbyterian in his religious affiliations, and in politics 
he is an independent, having voted for Garfield, Cleveland, McKin- 
ley, Parker. 

Dr. Barringer is a teacher by profession because he loves to 
teach. A proper choice of a life work and intense love of it 
combined make the ideal worker. He is saturated with a love for 
teaching and the cause of education. 

The December number, 1902, page 800, of The School Review, 
edited by the "School of Education of the University of Chicago," 
speaking of the recent great discussion in Virginia on education, 
says: 

"There is no State in the Union that has been evincing such an interest 
in education during the past year as the 'Mother of Presidents.' The 
meeting of the Constitutional Convention made it necessary that the 
educational interests should be thoroughly investigated and the best 
parts conserved. This discussion has borne fruit, and one of the best 
and most statesmanlike utterances has just been made by Professor Paul 
B. Barringer, Chairman of the Faculty of the University of Virginia. 
The opening and the closing paragraphs are specially interesting, and will 
give our readers a fairly adequate idea of the prospects for better and 
higher education in Virginia. Dr. Barringer said : 

"I take the position regarding the public schools of Virginia that there 



144 



NORTH CAROLINA 



is but one course that can offer hope for this State, and that is a com- 
plete, general, non-sectarian system of education, such as was proposed 
by Mr. Jefferson one hundred and twenty-five years ago — a system of ele- 
mentary schools, a complete system of public high schools or academies, 
and a University. This is exactly the system which has made the States 
of the North and West what they are to-day in wealth and power, and 
it has been the lack of such an educational machine that has caused Vir- 
ginia to drop from her one-time position of primacy in wealth and influ- 
ence to the position which she now occupies — some twenty-five from the 
top in a total of forty-five States. 



"I believe in changing the University to fit the public schools, and chang- 
ing the public schools to fit the University. Let us have an organic con- 
nection throughout the whole, so that a stimulus applied at any part will 
be felt throughout the entire system. When this is done, Virginia will 
once more take her natural place in the galaxy of States, and will prosper 
as she has never prospered before. The spirit of Jefferson is here, and here 
will come the strong, the virile, and the free — the University will shine 
as a city that is set upon a hill, and all things will turn toward the light." 

Wise words well written. Their adoption will bless any State 
in our great Republic. This writer knows no better words than 
those quoted with which to close this sketch of a representative 
member of a most remarkable family. 

Paul B. Means. 





- d:. £' <:; ?!'7//,it^a s..Bra.j\ryr 





^^y'^^ ^^^^ ^' 





DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER, Jr. 

£HE subject of this sketch, the son of the Hon. 
Daniel Moreau Barringer and EUzabeth 
(Wethered) Barringer, was born May 25, 
i860, at his father's home in Raleigh, North 
Carolina. In this beautiful old home, near the 
old Governor's Mansion, at the foot of Fayette- 
ville Street, his early childhood was spent. 

The first school which he attended was that of Mr. Ryan in 
Raleigh. From Mr. Ryan's school he went, in 1871, to Bingham's 
Military Academy, then located at Mebanesville, North Carolina. 
At this school he enjoyed the privilege of being taught by Colonel 
William Bingham, one of the most remarkable and influential 
teachers the South has produced. While at Mebanesville, young 
Barringer first began to manifest, as a hunter and collector, that 
interest in nature and natural phenomena which afterward had so 
much to do with leading him to adopt the career of a geologist 
and consulting engineer. He remained at Bingham's school till 
the death of his father in 1873. In 1874 he became a student at 
Colonel Richard Malcolm Johnston's school, "Pen Lucy," near 
Baltimore. There he made such progress that in 1876 he was 
able to enter the sophomore class at Princeton, from which insti- 
tution he was graduated with the famous class of 1879. 

During the years which elapsed between the date of his father's 
death and the date of his graduation from college, he was the 



146 NORTH CAROLINA 

object of the most devoted solicitude on the part of his elder and 
only surviving brother, Lewin Wethered Barringer, at that time 
a successful practitioner at the Philadelphia bar. This brother 
filled, as far as he was able, a father's place. No ward ever had 
a more loving and careful guardian, and out of this double and 
most intimate relationship there developed a lifelong attachment 
as striking as it was rare. Lewin Barringer's death on Decem- 
ber 15, 1900, brought a sad parting. 

After his graduation from Princeton, Mr. Barringer, at his 
brother's suggestion, studied law at the University of Pennsyl- 
vania, and graduated from the Department of Law of that insti- 
tution with the class of 1882. At the time of his graduation he 
was chosen by his classmates as the permanent president of the 
class. In the same year he received the degree of Master of Arts 
from his Alma Mater, the College of New Jersey, commonly 
known as Princeton College, now Princeton University. 

For several years he was associated with his brother in 
the practice of law, but his heart was never in the work of 
that profession. His strong attraction was toward the natural 
sciences. 

In 1889, therefore, he- decided to give up the practice of law, 
and took up the study of economic geology at Harvard University. 
He followed this up with a course in mineralogy under Dr. J. W. 
Mallet, F.R.S., at the University of Virginia. After serving for a 
few months with the Arkansas Geological Survey, he began a 
systematic course of travel and study among the great mining 
properties of the world in order the better to fit himself for the 
calling of consulting engineer and geologist, to which he then 
definitely turned. 

At this time, and in the years which followed, he was engaged 
upon the preparation, in collaboration with Mr. John Stokes 
Adams of the Philadelphia bar, of an important legal work en- 
titled "The Law of Mines and Mining in the United States." 
This work was published in 1897, and is one of the standard 
authorities on the subject of which it treats. Mr. Barringer also 
published at about the same time a work entitled "A Description 



DANIEL MOREAU BARRINGER, Jr. , 147 

of Minerals of Gommercial Value," which has been extremely well 
received. 

In the course of his professional work Mr. Barringer has been 
fortunate enough to discover and become interested in several 
valuable mining properties, in the development of which he is at 
present actively engaged. His professional work as a consulting 
engineer and geologist has led him to travel very extensively, and 
few men have made better use of the broadening influence of 
travel. Possessing a sturdy, vigorous frame, great physical 
energy and a mind at once accurate and penetrative, his delight 
in what might be termed active field work — that is, in exploration 
and geological study as applied particularly to practical mining 
operations — has been very keen. His Pastes are in no sense those 
of the "closet naturalist," and his powers as a close and accurate 
observer of natural phenomena are recognized as being of a very 
high order. 

Mr. Barringer occupies many positions of trust in Philadel- 
phia, the city of his adoption, where he has the respect and esteem 
of those who know him for the same qualities that have been 
noted in his ancestors, the sketches of whose lives are printed in 
this work. He is a trustee of Jefiferson Medical College, one of 
the Committee of Fifty of Princeton University, a director in a 
number of organizations, and a member of many scientific 
societies. 

On the 20th of October, 1897, he married Margaret Bennett, 
daughter of Guy and Sarah (Drew) Bennett, of Phoenix, Arizona. 
To them have been born five children : Brandon Barringer, born 
June II, 1899; Daniel Moreau Barringer, Jr., born June 30, 1900; 
Sarah Barringer, born September 13, 1901 ; John Paul Barringer, 
born February 10, 1903 ; and Elizabeth Wethered Barringer, born 
July 20, 1904. 

Woodrow Wilson. 




DE WITT CLINTON BENBOW 




fN preparing a short history of the life of the 
late Dr. De Witt Clinton Benbow, the writer 
is impressed with the fact that the doctor, pre- 
eminently practical, had little patience with a 
man who used ten w rds to express an idea 
when five would have done as well, or the 
pronouncing of eulogies on a person with superlative adjectives 
without telling what the person was fit foi or what he did. The 
writer will, therefore, in order to be in harmony with this idea 
of brevity and precision demanded by the doctor while he lived, 
endeavor, so far as he is able, to leave off all superlative words 
and figurative expressions and confine this narrative to a plain 
statement of facts, and let the reader draw his own conclusions 
as to the ability, character and relative greatness of the man. 

The Benbows of North Carolina are of English ancestry, who 
came first to Pennsylvania and later to North Carolina. The 
first of the name that can now be traced was an admiral in the 
English navy, and notwithstanding the great honors and emolu- 
ments incident to the office, he retired to private life so soon as 
he could be honorably relieved and went into business. 

It has always been characteristic of the Benbows to delight in 
occupations that required physical as well as mental activity. 
They wanted elbow room. They rejoiced in great enterprises — 
constructing mills, cutting canals, building houses and doing busi- 




^■•y. ii^£- ^ U^//,i,~!s ^^.-^ Anr^ 



DE WITT CLINTON BENBOW 149 

ness. In the main, they had Uttle taste for law, politics, battle- 
fields and notoriety. 

The subject of this sketch was pre-eminently a Benbow, a sort 
of a conc-entration of the strong points of the whole family. He 
was born near Oak Ridge, in Guilford County, North Carolina, 
on the 23d day of February, 1832. His parents, Charles and Mary 
Benbow, were devoted Christians of the old-fashioned Quaker 
stock. He was the youngest of the four sons and one daughter. 
His uncles, as well as his father, were strong pillars in their 
church and weighty and useful men in their generation — men that 
you could depend upon for assistance to all benevolent and humane 
undertakings; men worthy of the sacred remembrance of their 
countrymen. 

At the age of nineteen. Dr. Benbow went to Providence, Rhode 
Island, to "Friends' School," where he remained for several years, 
completing his education and preparing for the profession of 
dentistry. He, with knapsack filled with cold bread buckled upon 
his back, walked over the hills and mountains of Vermont, en- 
joying the magnificent scenery and gathering in a practical knowl- 
edge of common life that would add useful power in after years. 
In 1854 he returned to Fayetteville, North Carolina, and there 
practiced his profession for six years, during which time he 
bought and operated the Cross Creek cotton factory at Fayette- 
ville, in which he had worked as a boy. 

On the 30th of November, 1857, he married Mary Elizabeth 
Scott, the daughter of David Scott, of Greensboro, North Caro- 
lina, a most excellent Christian lady, who proved to be a most 
suitable helpmeet for an able, honest and ambitious man. She was 
a woman of influence, and highly esteemed by her wide circle of 
friends. They had born unto them four children, three of whom 
yet live. Their only son, Charles D. Benbow, is at this time in 
Greensboro, and is counted as one of North Carolina's most prom- 
inent and wide-awake men. 

In the early sixties, Dr. Benbow located in the city of Greens- 
boro, and at the time of the surrender of General Johnston in 
1865, while the Union army was on one side of the town and the 



ISO NORTH CAROLINA 

Confederate army on the other, both the Federal and the Con- 
federate officers were entertained at the home of Dr. Benbow. 

From 1870 until his death, in 1902, his history was pretty much 
the history of Greensboro. Here in Greensboro, where the doctor 
lived, and where this historical sketch will be read, I have a 
perfect assurance that my statement will be accepted; and to 
satisfy those who know nothing about it, I will set forth the 
following facts. But before doing so, I wish to say with Admiral 
Schley that the honor of the victory is due to the men behind the 
guns. 

In Greensboro, for twenty-five years. Dr. Benbow was not only 
the commander-in-chief of the gunners, but handled and fired 
the big gun himself. Some of our citizens went to the legislature 
and voted for such laws as the people demanded ; some played the 
part of city officers, business men and professionals, proud of 
themselves and proud of their city; and some posed as esquires 
and gentry, seeking fame by puffs in newspapers ; but Dr. Benbow 
stayed with his guns and cared not for public notoriety nor for 
public opinion, except so far as it benefited the people and de- 
veloped the country. He would not walk five steps out of his 
way to be seen, nor give two cents a year to have his picture 
and name in a newspaper. He remained with his guns, and what 
did he do? The records of our city will show. From 1872 to 
1876 Dr. Benbow was chairman of our school committee, and 
it was during that time that he inaugurated a movement and led 
a campaign that ended in establishing the first graded school, not 
only in Greensboro, but in the State of North Carolina. 

In 1871 to 1872 he built a hotel in Greensboro containing 
seventy-four rooms. Many people shook their heads and said it 
would not pay. They told the doctor that not over three persons 
arrived in the city per day that would stop at a hotel. The doctor 
simply answered, "Where would they stop?" From the dav it 
was opened to its fifth anniversary, the average daily registration 
was ninety-three; and for the first ten years, amid panics and 
changes of railroad schedules, the average was sixty-four. At 
the opening of this hotel were many editors of great newspapers 



DE WITT CLINTON BENBOW 151 

from the North, together with the governor of this State and 
many other prominent men. There and then our city received its 
first great advertisement, and was first called the "City of 
Flowers." 

In 1873, when the colored people were trying to get up their 
first college in this part of the State, and were without friends 
or money. Dr. Benbow took the matter in hand, loaned them the 
money and built the college himself; and that gave to Greens- 
boro Bennett College. 

When the Greensboro Female College was being built, Dr. 
Barringer, the superintendent of the work, fell from a scaffold 
and was killed. Dr. Benbow hastened to the grounds and told 
the laborers that the work would go on, and for every man to 
remain at his place. About this time one of the banks located in 
Greensboro, where the funds of the college were deposited, failed, 
and most of the college funds were lost, and it seemed at the time 
that the building of the college would have to be postponed. 
Then it was that Dr. Benbow came to the front and offered not 
only to manage the work, but to furnish the money to carry it on. 
And thus the college was built. 

In 1879 a message was sent by Dr. Benbow to the Teachers' 
Assembly at Waynesville, North Carolina, urging that some 
action be taken toward establishing a normal school to prepare 
girls for school-teachers in the State, but nothing was done at the 
time. In 1880 he again sent a message to the Teachers' Assembly 
held at Black Mountain, asking that a memorial be prepared 
setting forth the great need of well-trained women teachers of the 
public schools of the State, and that this memorial be presented 
by a committee of the Teachers' Assembly to the next legislature. 
This was done, and the North Carolina Teacher, the organ of the 
Teachers' Association, began a crusade that continued until every 
county institute and educators generally favored a normal school. 
An act of the legislature establishing such a school having finally 
been passed, bids were made by several of the larger cities of 
the State to locate it in their midst. Dr. Benbow prepared a note 
and headed a list of signers guaranteeing the State $30,000 if the 



152 NORTH CAROLINA 

college were located in Greensboro. In the same way he took 
the lead in guaranteeing $ 11,000 to secure the A. and M. College 
for colored people. In this way Greensboro captured them both. 

He was the prime mover in getting up what was known as the 
North Carolina Steel and Iron Company, and while the enterprise 
was not altogether a success, it did lead to the securing of the 
finishing mills and to the mammoth enterprises of the Cone 
Brothers at White Oak, Revolution and Proximity. 

He was a stockholder and an influential worker in both the 
North Carolina and Western North Carolina Railroad Companies. 
There was scarcely anything of a business nature that came be- 
fore the people of Greensboro but that Dr. Benbow was the 
moving and ruling spirit. He owned more store buildings, more 
dwellings, more vacant lots, more mills and factories, did nicer 
farming and had the largest farms of any man in the county; 
and besides was a large stockholder in several coal and iron 
mines. 

Possibly the greatest achievement of his life, and the one that 
finally caused him the greatest anxiety and loss, was the associ- 
ating himself with a half a dozen other of North Carolina's most 
patriotic men to organize the North State Improvement Com- 
pany, and build what was known as the Cape Fear and Yadkin 
Valley Railroad ; and had it not been for the terrible money panic 
of 1893 to 1896, Dr. Benbow and his colleagues would not only 
have seen the road finished and a large section of our State 
developed and enriched, as -they did see, but would have added 
hundreds of thousands of dollars to their private fortunes. 

He started out in the world a poor man. His word was as good 
as his bond, and no one ever charged him with having done them 
a wrong. He was ever loyal to duty and friends. All that he 
ever had he made himself. Between the years of 1857 and 1892 
he had amassed a fortune of over half a million of dollars. 

He was a member of the Quaker Church, a trustee of Guilford 
College, a trustee of North Carolina Yearly Meeting and a director 
of several patriotic and charitable institutions. He was the father 
of the good-roads movement in Guilford County, an absolute tee- 



DE WITT CLINTON BENBOW 153 

totaler, used tobacco in no form, and the greatest terror to the 
liquor power that has ever lived in the county. He was truly 
a man of mark, because by himself and of himself he made his 
mark. 

If he employed a lawyer, he insisted upon telling the lawyer 
what to do. If he sent for a doctor, he instantly intimated that 
he meant for the doctor to get at his work and not talk too much. 
He simply looked after his own business, and in all his building 
he was his own architect, draughtsman, contractor and paymaster. 
He was quick to grasp a point, and far-seeing in business. While 
most men walked around the road and up and down hill, he 
seemed to be able to step across, arriving at his destination seem- 
ingly without effort and immeasurably in advance of his com- 
rades. Notable instances of this are his advocacy of Prohibition 
when Prohibition was merely a dream, but he saw it accomplished. 
The same is true of the no-fence law and the macadamized roads. 
Eminently practical, he never undertook a thing until he saw a 
purpose in it that would redound for good to the community, and 
once begun, he never thought of it in any way except as 
accomplished. 

Had he lived in New York with its vast moneyed opportunities, 
he would have become a multi-millionaire. Had he been absolute 
ruler of a State, no tobacco would have been raised or manu- 
factured and no intoxicating liquors would have been distilled or 
sold; and nicely painted schoolhouses and churches would have 
been built in every community; with energies and moneys of the 
people occupied to their limit in factories and enterprises devoted 
to material advancement and production. 

On the afternoon before his death, which occurred on Sep- 
tember 2, 1902, he called together his family and a few of his 
closest friends, and told them that he would soon be gone — that 
he had placed all his business and worldly affairs in the hands 
of his Maker, and that he was quietly and peacefully awaiting 
the end of this life and the awakening in the next. And before 
the rising of another sun, Dr. Benbow's body had been placed in 
the casket, and our community and the State had lost one of its 
most useful and progressive citizens. C. P. Frazier. 





THOMAS BENBURY 

'T or near Edenton, in the precinct of Chowan, 
in the year 1736, was born Thomas Benbury, 
who was destined to become one of North 
Carolina's most noted patriots in the war of the 
Revolution. He was the son of John Benbury ; 
and the latter's father, William Benbury, was 
one of the earliest vestrymen of the Church of England in North 
Carolina, serving in that capacity on the first establishment of 
vestrymen in the year 1701. 

Prior to the Revolution, Thomas Benbury had already begun 
to rise before the public eye as a member of the Colonial Assembly, 
and from the very earliest stages of the troubles with Great 
Britain was an active patriot. In the course of the war, five 
North Carolina Provincial Congresses convened in defiance of 
the Royal Government, and in every one of these bodies Thomas 
Benbury sat as a delegate from the county of Chowan ; from 
the beginning of the independent State government down to the 
close of the Revolution were six sessions of the Assembly, and 
in every one of these sessions Mr. Benbury was a member of the 
House of Commons — for more than one term occupying the office 
of speaker. At the first organization of State troops for the 
defense of North Carolina, he entered the service as major, and 
finally rose to the rank of brigadier-general of his district, in 
which capacity he saw active service in the field. Such is a brief 



THOMAS BENBURY 155 

summary of his war record, which we shall now give in 
detail. 

It was on the 24th day of August, in the year 1774, that North 
Carolina's first independent Congress convened, being called by 
a committee appointed at a meeting of the citizens of the Cape 
Fear counties. Governor Martin, the royal governor, did all in 
his power to prevent its meeting, without avail. In this first 
Revolutionary Assembly, and also in a similar one held at the 
same place, beginning on April 3, 1775, Mr. Benbury was an 
active participant, as he was also in the Congress which met at 
Hillsboro on the 20th of August, 1775. The body last named, in 
view of the fact that hostilities had already begun, proceeded to 
add a military feature to North Carolina, and on September 9, 
177s, elected Mr. Benbury major of militia for the county of 
Chowan. On the same day it also elected him a member of the 
Committee of Safety for the Edenton district. After his return 
to Edenton, Major Benbury, who was one of the vestrymen of 
St, Paul's Church, became one of the signers of a test oath, 
which the vestry caused to be entered on the parish register. 
This oath is a copy of the one prescribed by the Congress at 
Hillsboro on the 23d of August, 1775, though some have believed 
that it originated in the vestry, and that it was practically a 
"Declaration of Independence." 

On April 4, 1776, a Provincial Congress began its proceed- 
ings at Halifax, and in this body Major Benbury took his seat 
as a delegate, also serving on a number of important committees. 
He was a member of the Committee on Privileges and Elections, 
of the committee to settle civil accounts, the committee to inquire 
into the conduct of those suspected of Toryism, the committee 
to take measures for the defence of the seacoast, the committee 
to expedite the emission of paper currency, and the committee to 
regulate the militia. 

In the Provincial Congress which met at Halifax on the 12th of 
November, 1776, Major Benbury appeared and took his seat as a 
delegate, and also served on several committees in this body, 
among them being the Committee on Privileges and Elections, 



156 NORTH CAROLINA 

the committee to procure salt for the use of the people of the 
colony, and the committee to devise means for paying the officers 
and men in the military service of the State. 

In the General Assembly of North Carolina for six sessions 
from 1777 till 1782, inclusive, Major Benbury was a member of 
the House of Commons from Chowan County. At the first of 
these sessions. Judge John Williams, of Granville, was elected 
speaker, but was later chosen as delegate to the Continental 
Congress, and Mr. Benbury was unanimously elected speaker to 
succeed him on the 28th of April, 1778. He was unanimously 
re-elected speaker on the 3d of May, 1779. His last legislative 
service was in the House of Commons of April, 1782, and he 
was again the unanimous choice of that body for speaker. 

In 1783, the following year, his son Richard filled his position 
in the legislature as representative from Chowan. 

In the latter part of 1779, Major Benbury was advanced to the 
grade of brigadier-general, and rendered active service in the field 
during the year 1780 in defending the northern boundary of the 
State, and also the seacoast, against Tory and British incursions 
from Virginia. 

After the war. President Washington made General Benbury 
collector of the port of Edenton, and this post he held for a 
number of years. 

General Benbury was twice married. His first wife, to whom 
he was married on February 4, 1761, was Thamer Howcott, and 
to this union were born two sons, Samuel (who died young) and 
Richard. The maiden name of the second wife of General Ben- 
hury we are unable to ascertain, though her given name was 
Elizabeth ("Betty") ; to her he was married in the year 1769. 

The death of General Benbury occurred on the Sth of Feb- 
ruary, 1793. 

The above-mentioned Richard Benbury had a son Thomas, 
-who was the father of Captain John Benbury, of Company A, 
First North Carolina Regiment, in the Confederate army, 
who was mortally wounded at the battle of Malvern Hill on 
July I, 1862. Marshall De Lancey Haywoo'd. 




JOHNSTON BLAKELEY 




!HE most noted commander who was furnished 
by North Carolina to the United States Navy 
during the second war with Great Britain was 
Captain Johnston Blakeley, of Wilmington. 

Captain Blakeley was brought to America 
when an infant sixteen months old. He was 
born in Ireland in October, 1781. The ship upon which he was 
brought to America landed at Charleston, and in a few months 
his father, John Blakeley, came to make his home in Wilmington, 
North Carolina. John Blakeley's wife died either on the voyage 
to America or soon after landing at Charleston, and her infant 
son Johnston was thus left to the care of his father. The elder 
Blakeley became a merchant in Wilmington and amassed some 
wealth. His son he sent to New York, and entered him at a 
school in the town of Flatbush, on Long Island. In 1796 John 
Blakeley died. By the terms of his will, the eminent North 
Carolina lawyer, Edward Jones, at one time solicitor-general of 
the State, became guardian of his son. Mr. Jones was himself 
a native of Ireland, and had shown a deep interest in the Blake- 
leys from the time of their first arrival in Wilmington. He now 
became a second father to the young orphan, and took him into 
his own household, living part of the time in Wilmington and 
at other times iri Chatham County. From Chatham County, 
Johnston Blakeley entered the University of North Carolina in 



iS8 NORTH CAROLINA 

1797. In the North CaroHna Booklet for January, 1902 (mis- 
printed 1901), is a sketch by the Hon. Kemp P. Battle, who gives 
some interesting anecdotes of Blakeley's career at the university. 
At that institution he was obedient to just authority, yet firm in 
maintaining his personal rights. Of his record in the Philan- 
thropic Society to which he belonged Dr. Battle says : 

"Like his father, he was of a genial, agreeable temperament, and the 
only exception I find to his uniform faithfulness to duty was laughing 
three times while the society was in session. For these offenses, which 
certainly were not of a very serious nature, the future autocrat of the 
quarter-deck was mulcted a grand total of fifteen cents." 

Dr. Battle also states that while at the university young Blake- 
ley was particularly distinguished for his proficiency in mathe- 
matics in its application to navigation, surveying and kindred 
subjects. From this it would appear that even then his future 
naval career had been determined upon. Owing to some financial 
reverses, due to loss by fire of property in Wilmington, Blakeley 
left the university in 1799. Declining a proffered loan by Mr. 
Jones to enable him to continue his studies, Blakeley entered the 
navy as a midshipman on the Sth of February, 1800. The date 
of his future promotions we may also mention here as follows: 
lieutenant, February 10, 1807; master commandant, July 24, 181 3; 
and captain, November 24, 1814. In 1800, almost immediately 
after his entrance into the navy. Midshipman Blakeley was 
ordered to the Mediterranean squadron and fought in the war 
with Tripoli. It was in the second war with Great Britain, 
1 812-15, that his greatest fame was gained. Having been himself 
trained by such sailors as Dale, Preble, Decatur, Rodgers and 
others of like ability, Blakeley was an officer of experience and 
capability when called to more important commands. His first 
independent command was in 181 1. Later he was placed in com- 
mand of the Wasp, and sailed out of Portsmouth, New Hamp- 
shire, on a voyage to the English coast in 1814. On July 28, 1814, 
he encountered the Reindeer, and captured that vessel after a 
bloody battle, in which the English commander, Captain William 



JOHNSTON BLAKELEY 159 

Manners, was slain. About a month later, in August, the British 
ship Avon also surrendered to him after a heated action. In the 
two months of August and September, Captain Blakeley captured 
a large number of British vessels. He cruised about the British 
Channel as boldly as if he were sailing through American waters 
in time of peace. His exploits created the greatest enthusiasm 
in America, and were a source of especial pride to North Carolina, 
his home State. In October, 1814, the Congress of the United 
States passed a joint resolution of thanks for his services. In 
the State Senate of North Carolina on December i, 1814, was 
introduced a series of resolutions (afterward concurred in by 
the House), from which the following is an extract: 

"Resolved, That this legislature feels with ardent and peculiar emotion 
the honor reflected upon North Carolina by the skill, courage and good 
conduct of one of her sons, Captain Johnston Blakeley, of the United 
States sloop-of-war Wasp, in destruction of two of the enemy's vessels 
of equal force, the Reindeer and the Avon. 

"Resolved, Therefore, that as a duty, no less than a pleasure, the 
legislature of his native State unanimously agree to present to Captain 
Blakeley on his return to the United States a superb sword, appropriately 
adorned, in the name and on behalf of his fellow-citizens." 

/ 

The gallant seaman, for whose return so many honors waited, 
was destined never again to set foot on American soil ; and until 
the sea gives up its dead, his fate will never be known. On one 
of his captured vessels, the Atalanta, he placed a prize crew and 
sent it with despatches to America. The Atalanta arrived safely 
at Savannah, Georgia, on the 4th of November, 1814, and with it 
came the last communication ever received directly from Captain 
Blakeley. On October 9th, some days later than the date of 
Blakeley's despatches, the Swedish brig Adonis was overtaken 
and inspected by the Wasp. After that his vessel was heard of 
no more. Many wild rumors about the fate of Blakeley and his 
crew gained currency, but none could be verified. Some were 
to the effect that an English frigate had put into Cadiz badly 
crippled by a severe engagement with an unknown American 
ship, which disappeared so suddenly in the night that it was 



i6o NORTH CAROLINA 

believed to have sunk. This story could never be traced to an 
authentic source ; nor could another rumor be verified to the effect 
that the Wasp had been wrecked off the African coast and that 
its crew were prisoners among the natives. The general im- 
pression is that the Wasp went down during a gale, or that it 
may have been blown up by the accidental explosion of its powder 
magazine. 

On December i6, 1815, the Senate of North Carolina passed 
another resolution, in which the House concurred, directing that 
the sword which had been procured for Captain Blakeley should 
be forwarded to his widow by the governor. The Senate on 
December 17, 1816, passed an additional resolution that Captain 
Blakeley's daughter, his only child, should be educated at the 
expense of the State, and requesting Mrs. Blakeley to draw on the 
public treasurer for such sums as should be necessary for that 
purpose. These appropriations for the benefit of Miss Blakeley 
continued for more than ten years, until the session of the legis- 
lature of 1829-30, when we find the resolution that "it is inex- 
pedient to continue the annual appropriations made for the edu- 
cation of Miss Udney M. Blakeley, and that the same be 
discontinued." From the sketch of Dr. Battle, already quoted,, 
we learn that the maiden name of Captain Blakeley's wife was 
Jane Ann Hooper; that after Blakeley's death she married Dr. 
Abbott, of the Danish Island of St. Croix, in the West Indies; 
that Udney Blakeley, who had been adopted by the State of 
North Carolina, married Baron Joseph von Bretton, of St. Croix, 
and died leaving an infant, which did not long survive its mother. 
With the death of this infant the blood of the famous sea captain 
became extinct. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





READING BLOUNT 

^^rt^^^^^NE of North Carolina's distinguished Revo- 
*-~^^^^^''^^'*^^^ tionary officers, serving as a major in the Con- 
tinental Line, was Reading Blount. After 
peace had returned, this gentleman's service in 
the militia troops of the State gained for him 
the rank of major-general. 
He was a native of the county of Beaufort, and was born on 
the 22d of February, 1757, in that part of Beaufort which was 
later erected into a new county and called Pitt. The latter county 
was established when he was a child three years old, and hence 
his earliest recorded services designate him as a citizen of Pitt, 
though he afterward removed to the town of Washington, in that 
part of the original county which still bore the name of Beaufort. 
The family of Blount, as elsewhere noted in this work, is 
generally regarded as having been seated in North Carolina 
at an earlier time than any other family whose surname is now 
extant. 

Reading Blount was a son of Captain Jacob Blount, paymaster 
of North Carolina troops in the Revolutionary War, by his first 
wife, Barbara Gray, of Bertie County. Captain Jacob Blount was 
a son of Thomas Blount, whose wife was Anne Reading. 
Thomas Blount also had a son named Reading, uncle of the 
subject of this sketch. Thomas the elder settled in the vicinity 
of what is now Beaufort County about 1673. He is thought to 



i62 NORTH CAROLINA 

have been a younger brother of James Blount, who settled in 
Chowan precinct in 1669. 

The subject of the present sketch, Reading Blount, was only 
nineteen years old when the Provincial Congress of North Caro- 
lina elected him a captain, on the i6th of April, 1776. On the 
day following he was mustered into the Fifth North Carolina 
Continental Regiment, commanded by Colonel Edward Buncombe. 
This regiment fought in the operations against Sir Henry Clinton 
in the winter of 1776-77, and in the spring of 1777 marched north- 
ward and joined Washington's main army. At Brandywine, on 
September nth, and at Germantown on October 4th, the Fifth 
Regiment was engaged; and in the latter battle its brigade com- 
mander. General Francis Nash, together with Colonel Buncombe 
and Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Irwin, both of the Fifth ; Captain 
Jacob Turner of the Third, and Lieutenant John McCann of the 
Sixth Regiment were all either killed on the field or mortally 
wounded, while many other officers were wounded less seriously. 
Colonel Buncombe was also taken prisoner, dying in captivity. The 
Fifth Regiment having lost its two principal officers, and other 
regiments being greatly reduced, the North Carolina troops were 
re-arranged shortly thereafter; and on the 12th of May, 1778, 
Captain Blount was promoted to the rank of major, being then 
assigned to the Second Continental Regiment, under the command 
of Colonel John Patten. Like Blount, Colonel Patten was a 
citizen of Beaufort County. 

After creditable service in the northern campaigns. Major 
Blount was ordered southward, and we next find him as one of 
the battalion commanders at the battle of Eutaw Springs, in 
South Carolina, on the 8th of September, 1781, where he dis- 
tinguished himself under the leadership of Brigadier-General 
Jethro Sumner. Major Blount remained in the army until 
mustered out at the close of the war. He was one of the original 
members of the North Carolina Society of the Cincinnati, as was 
also his father. Paymaster Jacob Blount. 

At the sessions of 1786 and 1787, Major Blount represented 
Pitt County in the North Carolina House of Commons. He later 



READING BLOUNT 



163 



removed his residence to Beaufort County. On December 12, 
1800, the legislature elected him major-general of the first division 
of the militia of North Carolina. 

General Blount's wife was Lucy Harvey, daughter of Colonel 
Miles Harvey (son of the patriot John Harvey), and he has many 
descendants now living. 

The death of General Reading Blount occurred at Washington, 
in Beaufort County, North Carolina, on the 13th of October, 1807. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





WILLIAM AUGUSTUS BLOUNT 




'HE Blount famil)''s earliest member in North 
Carolina came to the colony in 1669, and settled 
in the precinct of Chowan. In Wheeler's Rem- 
iniscences, the late Governor Henry T. Clark, 
who was a high authority on genealogy, is 
quoted as expressing the opinion that no faroily 
whose name now survives in the State can trace its origin back 
to a period so remote in the history of North Carolina. 

One of the best-known members of the family in more recent 
times was General William Augustus Blount, subject of this 
sketch, who was born in the town of Washington, Beaufort 
County, North Carolina, on the 26th of October, 1792. He was 
the son of General John Gray Blount, Senior, whose landed pos- 
sessions in acres were numbered by the hundreds of thousands, 
many of his possessions lying in Western North Carolina, though 
he himself was a citizen of Beaufort County, and represented it 
in the North Carolina House of Commons just prior to the close 
of the Revolution in 1782, and also at seven succeeding sessions, 
from 1783 to 1789; and he was State senator from Beaufort in 
1797. The father of John Gray Blount, and grandfather of our 
subject, was Captain Jacob Blount, a paymaster of North Caro- 
lina troops in the army of the Revolution, an original member of 
the North Carolina Society of the Cincinnati. He was three times 



WILLIAM AUGUSTUS BLOUNT 165 

married, and his first wife, Barbara Gray, was mother of General 
John Gray Blount. 

The subject of the present sketch, William Augustus Blount, 
was only twenty years old when the second war with Great 
Britain begun, yet volunteered at the beginning of that conflict, 
and was commissioned first lieutenant in the Eighteenth Infantry 
on May 8, 1812. On the 4th of September, 1813, he was pro- 
moted to the rank of captain. During a part of his service he 
was stationed at the defenses of Charleston, in South Carolina. 
At the close of the war he retired from the service, being honor- 
ably discharged on the 15th of June, 1815. In the preceding 
month his brother, Major John Gray Blount, Jr., resigned from 
the army, after having served through the war. 

Captain W. A. Blount had retired from the regular army only 
a few months when, on November 28, 181 5, he was elected major- 
general of the sixth division of North Carolina militia. When 
raised to this high rank he had barely reached the estate of man- 
hood, being only twenty-three years old. 

In the year 1825, General Blount represented Beaufort County 
in the North Carolina House of Commons, and was re-elected to 
serve at the sessions of 1826 and 1827. Being much interested 
in the cause of education, he was elected a trustee of the University 
of North Carolina in 1826, and filled that position up to the time 
of his death, more than forty years thereafter. He also served 
for some years as a member of the State Board of Internal Im- 
provements. An intense love of the South characterized his whole 
life, and nothing but age — he being in his seventieth year when 
the war began — prevented his personal participation in the con- 
flict of 1861-65. Being a man of wealth, however, he was a liberal 
contributor to the comfort of men in service. On one occasion 
during the war, while visiting Camp Holmes, near Raleigh, he 
observed a poorly-clad company of volunteers, and immediately 
had the whole detachment newly clothed at his own personal 
expense. His only surviving son, Major W. A. Blount, Jr., was 
an aide-de-camp on the staff of General Lawrence O'Bryan 
Branch, who had married General Blount's only daughter. 



i66 



NORTH CAROLINA 



General Blount was twice married. His first wife was Anne 
Haywood, eldest daughter of Sherwood Haywood, of Raleigh, 
and granddaughter of Colonel Philemon Hawkins, Jr., of Warren 
County. The only children of this marriage (except a son, who 
died at the University of North Carolina) were the above-men- 
tioned Major Blount and Mrs. Branch. The second wife of 
General Blount was Anne Little John. By this lady he had no 
children. 

The downfall of the Confederate Government was a great blow 
to General Blount, and he did not long survive it. His death 
occurred at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Branch, in the city 
of Raleigh on June 4, 1867, and his remains are interred in the 
plot of the Branch family in the old cemetery. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





<r>^eC 



~\ 




EDWIN BROWNRIGG BORDEN 




!DWIN BROWNRIGG BORDEN, the most 
prominent citizen of Goldsboro, was born at his 
father's home in Waynesboro, the old county 
seat of Wayne County, which upon the com- 
pletion of the Wilmington and Weldon Rail- 
road became extinct, the court-house being 
moved to Goldsboro, about a mile distant, and the merchants and 
business men also removing there. 

The first Borden to come to America was Richard Borden, who 
emigrated from Kent County, in England, to Massachusetts in 
163s ; and when the new sect, the Quakers, sprang up some fifteen 
years later, he became a follower of the gentle Fox, and the laws 
of Massachusetts being very severe against the Quakers, he joined 
Roger Williams in Rhode Island, and made his home in that 
wilderness. 

One of his descendants, Arnold Borden, about 1825 came from 
Massachusetts to North Carolina and located in Waynesboro, 
where he became a merchant and planter. He married Maria 
Brownrigg, of Edgecombe County, and their son, the subject of 
this sketch, was born on July 5, 1831. 

While in youth Edwin Borden was never very robust, yet he 
enjoyed good health, and engaged with zest in the ordinary sports 
and recreations of village life. His father, being prosperous, pur- 
posed to give him the advantages of a good education, and after 



i68 NORTH CAROLINA 

attending the private schools of Goldsboro, he was sent as a pupil 
to the school at Valle Crucis, which Bishop Ives had established 
as a church school in the salubrious highlands of Ashe County. 
But unhappily the plans for his education fell through by the 
unfortunate death of his father in 1848, and although but seven- 
teen years of age, he left school and took charge of his mother's 
business, and for four years devoted himself to the management 
of her affairs. 

On the 13th of October, 1853, Mr. Borden was married to 
Miss Georgia C. Whitfield, and on the 19th of June, 1873, he 
was married the second time to Miss Ellen Lambert. He has 
had fourteen children born to him, of whom twelve survive. 

Shortly after coming of age in 1853, he began business on his 
own account as a merchant at Goldsboro, and he also engaged in 
farming, his energy and ability enabling him to carry on both 
operations with satisfactory results. For five years he continued 
as a merchant, and then withdrew from merchandising, and in 
i860 took charge of the branch bank which the Bank of North 
Carolina in that year established at Goldsboro. When the war 
came on, Mr. Borden was an ardent Southerner, and upon the 
organization, in April, 1862, of the Fiftieth North Carolina Regi- 
ment, which became a part of General Junius Daniel's brigade, he 
was appointed quartermaster of the regiment; but subsequently, 
on the transfer of the regiment to the Confederate service, he 
resigned, and was appointed Confederate States' commissioner, 
and was the Confederate States depositary at Goldsboro. He dis- 
charged the duties of his position in those uncertain times with 
strict integrity and great acceptability. 

After the war, he addressed himself zealously to his business 
interests, and he soon became known as one of the foremost and 
most capable men of his community. He served as chairman of 
the county board of commissioners of Wayne County, and under 
his management the financial affairs of the county were placed 
on a satisfactory basis ; and for nearly a half a century he has been 
prominently identified with all the business enterprises of his com- 
munity. No movement which promised any advantage to the 



EDWIN BROWNRIGG BORDEN 169 

town or county has failed to receive his approval and practical 
assistance, and, indeed, his energy and good judgment have been 
greatly instrumental in building up the manufacturing industries 
of Goldsboro and promoting the prosperity of the town in every 
department of organized effort. 

In 1873 he organized the branch bank of New Hanover, giving 
needed financial facilities to the community, and was president 
and director of it as long as it continued in business. In 1891 
he organized the Bank of Wayne, which bought out the former 
bank, and under his direction as president it has been one of the 
most successful financial institutions of the State. In 1883 he 
with others organized the Goldsboro Oil Company, and was 
president of it. It was managed with great success until it was 
bought by the Southern Oil Company in 1901. He with others 
organized the Wayne Agricultural Works for the manufacture of 
agricultural implements, and has always been active as a director 
in managing its affairs. With others he organized the Goldsboro 
Furniture Manufacturing Company, which does a large business, 
and he is a director in the company. He with others likewise 
organized the Goldsboro Ice Company, and is one of its directors. 
With his associates he also organized the Goldsboro Storage and 
Warehouse Company, of which he is the president; and with 
others he organized the Borden Manufacturing Company, that 
operates a cotton mill, and of which he is one of the managing 
directors. All of these enterprises are now in successful operation 
in Goldsboro, and they form the basis of the industrial progress 
and prosperity of the community. 

In 1876 his reputation as a financier and a business man of 
sound judgment and capacity was so high that he was invited 
by Mr. Walters and Mr. Newcomer, the virtual owners of the 
Wilmington and Weldon Railroad Company, to become associ- 
ated with them in that company as a director, and he enjoyed 
their confidence so largely that he was continued as a director 
with them until the merging of that company into the Atlantic 
Coast Line Railway; and he has since been constantly re-elected 
a director of that great organization, with its vast interests and 



I70 NORTH CAROLINA 

important relations to the industrial and commercial progress and 
prosperity of the Atlantic and Gulf States. The management of 
this corporation has for more than a quarter of a century been so 
able and masterly as to excite the admiration of all who are con- 
versant with its affairs and to reflect the greatest credit on the 
directors who are concerned in conducting its operations. 

While Mr. Borden has been so greatly engaged in business 
affairs, he has not been oblivious of his duties as a citizen, and he 
has taken great interest in local education, and has been a staunch 
friend of the graded schools of Goldsboro, which are so creditable 
to his community. His Christian character, unbending integrity 
and strong common sense have made a deep impression upon the 
people with whom he has for so many years been prominently 
associated, and he enjoys their thorough respect and confidence. 
For about fifty years he has been a member of the board of 
stewards of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, and while 
devoted to the interests of his own church, he has. extended his 
interest and liberality beyond the bounds of his own denomina- 
tion, and his gifts in aid of charity, religion and education have 
been substantial and continuous, but without ostentation. 

Being asked to offer some suggestion that would tend to 
strengthen sound ideals in life, he says that good habits, high 
ideals of duty, courage and persistence in living up to them, 
coupled with intelligent and well-directed energy, are in his opin- 
ion necessary to true success. 

5". A. Ashe. 





-a ^■^y//-4'-7s &^.~^ .Yy 



^^S2^^^-r.c^ 




ROBERT RUFUS BRIDGERS 




?HE youth of North CaroHna can turn to no 
worthier character to emulate, and the honest, 
industrious young man to no more encouraging 
example for his life's work, than that of Robert 
Rufus Bridgers. 

Seldom is the biographer able to point to the 
foundation stone of a successful life as depicted by its own 
architect. And yet the following extract from one of his letters 
to a friend may be studied with encouragement and great profit, 
especially by college students and by those upon the threshold 
of business life : 

"From 184s, when I went regularly to work, I did not leave the county 
for nearly eight years, except on business; I was always at my office 
during office hours, when not absent on business. Men depend more on 
hard work, good habits and economy for success than mere intellect. 
When I look back to my school days, I have found, of the several hundred 
whom I was with at school, that the success of the coming man was 
more foreshadowed by the industrious and good habits of the boy than 
by the boy's natural capacity. My business has caused me to employ 
hundreds of young men. The first question I ask is, What are his habits? 
The next is. How much work can he do? That is the key to success. 
Then I ask. What is his capacity? A young man of a fair, ordinary 
capacity can accomplish any usual business undertaking, if he will do 
enough work. Try, try, and success will sooner or later come. Of course, 
good integrity is a necessity in all positions in life; without it no man can 
have permanent success." 



1/2 NORTH CAROLINA 

Mr. Bridgers was of English descent. The first of his paternal 
ancestors in America was in the British army, and superintended 
the building of the brick church, near Smithfield, Virginia, in 
1632, being a vestryman in the church. William Bridgers, of 
Southampton, Virginia, married Fatha Ruffin in 1738, and one 
of their sons, Briton, married Margaret Rice, also of Southamp- 
ton, in 1761, and soon thereafter moved to Town Creek, in Edge- 
combe County, North Carolina. A part of the land then entered 
by him is now in the possession of a great-great-granddaughter, 
it having never been out of the family. John, a son of Briton 
Bridgers, married Elizabeth Kettlewells Routh in 1814, and died 
nine years later, leaving one daughter, Amanda, and two sons, 
John and the subject of this sketch, who was born at the family 
homestead on Town Creek, Edgecombe County, North Carolina, 
November 28, 18 19. 

Before he was five years old he was started to school to Rev. 
Mark Bennett, who afterward married his mother. After the 
first two weeks he made little or no progress for eight years. At 
the age of thirteen his mother put him to work, with the sug- 
gestion that she could make him plow if she could not make him 
study. He developed into a good "hand." After two years' 
work, he went to his mother with the statement that he was ready 
to study whenever she would send him to school. He had long 
wished to do this, but it took him nearly a year to overcome his 
obstinacy and false pride of yielding. 

In a week she had gladly prepared his clothes, and he was 
at Stony Hill Academy, in Nash County, owned and controlled 
by Martin R. Garrett, who was noted for his power of imparting 
instruction rather than his scholarship. 

The young student made excellent progress, being twice ad- 
vanced to higher classes, although his constitution was not then 
the strongest, and in November, 1836, he was about ready for 
college. During this time he had become quite expert in survey- 
ing, but his mother having prevailed upon him to study medicine, 
he was prepared under the direction of Dr. James J. Phillips and 
Dr. John J. Daniel for the usual course in a medical college, when 



ROBERT RUFUS BRIDGERS i73 

he decided and told his mother that he would never practice 
medicine. She promptly sent him to Arcadia, in Person County, 
where boys were prepared for the University of North Carolina. 
In January, 1838, he was admitted to the freshman class at Chapel 
Hill. Although poorly prepared, he secured admission upon the 
endorsement of Mr. Sumner, owner of the Arcadia School, that 
he was of good habits, a hard worker, who would make up all 
deficiencies and ultimately rank among the best of his class. 

His first year at college was not marked by any special merits, 
except good behavior and the punctual discharge of college duties, 
and this largely to gratify his mother, whom he loved with a 
rare and unusual devotion. In after life he often spoke of his 
feelings during commencement, and how he finally resolved to 
apply himself closely to his text-books next session or quit college 
and take up the study of the law. Instead of going to the college 
ball, he went to his room, in full hearing of the music, and began 
a review of the studies of the freshman course. During the 
vacation he kept up his studies with such application that at the 
expiration of six weeks he had completed his allotted review, but 
somewhat at the expense of his health. He had no more than 
fairly entered upon his studies as a sophomore when his fellow- 
students noticed the change, and predicted that if he stuck to his 
work he would lead his class. He graduated with first distinction 
in the class of 1841, which furnished many distinguished men. 

Mr. Bridgers took the study of law extra in his senior year, his 
graduating speech being on "The Science of Law," and was 
admitted to practice by the Supreme Court the week after his 
graduation. The chief justice said it was not well to study law 
at college, because it resulted in neglect of college work or im- 
paired health. Young Bridgers's face proved, if it did not sug- 
gest, the observation, for he was little more than a living skeleton. 
It was frankly admitted that the court tried to reject him, with 
six other Chapel Hill graduates, and even went so far as to 
examine him four of the six hours of the first day, in a class of 
twenty-two, and five of the six hours the second day. 

He had done justice to the college course and to the study of 



174 NORTH CAROLINA 

law, but with greatly impaired health ; and upon the advice of a 
physician he spent a year traveling on horseback, and for some 
time thereafter devoted his energies more to a complete restora- 
tion of health than to his life's great work. 

In 1844 he was sent to the legislature, being the youngest 
member of that body, and serving as a member of the Judiciary 
Committee. He then withdrew from politics and began the prac- 
tice of law in earnest, in Tarboro, in 1845. Meeting with early 
success, he became one of the leading practitioners in the circuit, 
especially in the Equity Court. He declined the ofRce of attorney- 
general and a circuit judgeship. 

In addition to the practice of law, he looked after his farming 
interests, where he plowed as a boy; and in December, 1852, he 
purchased 1041 acres of what afterward became his famous Stra- 
bane plantation of about 2500 acres, and really began his indi- 
vidual farming operations, which he carried on with marked 
success. It was often remarked that the two men of that genera- 
tion who did much to advance Edgecombe County and caused it 
to attain its very high agricultural standing were the two brothers, 
Robert R. and John L. Bridgers. The largest individual crop of 
cotton ever grown in North Carolina, and the largest per acre 
yield before the Civil War was grown on Strabane in the year 
1858, when 509 bales were made on 500 acres. It is doubtful 
if this yield has ever been surpassed in the history of the State. 
He carried his broad and progressive views with him to his 
plantations. He was the largest user in his section of Peruvian 
guano, the only commercial fertilizer then used, and he was gen- 
erally liberal in the improvement of his lands. 

Not only was he a successful lawyer and planter, but an able 
financier and all-around business man. He organized and de- 
veloped a successful branch of the State bank at Tarboro, of 
which he was president until the war. Largely by his individual 
energy and ability was the Tarboro branch of the Wilmington and 
Weldon Railroad constructed. This resulted in his being made a 
director in that company; and thus he modestly entered the field 
in which he little dreamed was to be accomplished his life's great- 



ROBERT RUFUS BRIDGERS i75 

est and most successful work. From 1858 to 1861 he again served 
his county in the legislature, being a recognized leader, and the 
chairman of the Judiciary Committee for the greater part of the 
time. 

Although he may not have been fervent for secession, especially 
at that time, he was nevertheless a strong State's Rights man, 
and believed that the action of the general government in for- 
bidding the slave-owners to carry their property into public terri- 
tories gave the South just cause to secede. He took part in the 
convention that determined that North Carolina should secede, 
and soon thereafter was elected to the Confederate Congress, 
where he served with great enthusiasm during the entire war. 
Here he exhibited to a marked degree that characteristic which 
the writer believes was the strongest element of business success 
in his makeup — a careful study of the probabilities of future 
development and preparation to meet new conditions rather than 
a dependence on the present or past for the guide-posts to direct 
his labors. 

From the beginning he advocated what now seems could have 
been the only practical and effectual financial policy for the Con- 
federate States' Government. He insisted that the South should 
not stop raising cotton, as it did, but on the contrary should 
increase the yield as much as possible; that the Confederate 
States being a new government, and having no gold reserve to 
give stability to its currency, our only remedy was to secure it in 
exchange for cotton, which was our one product that we could 
hope to use as a financial basis, and upon which we could build up 
and maintain a credit ; that while our currency would necessarily 
fluctuate, and even become debased, with the changing and un- 
certain conditions as the war progressed, yet England would take 
the cotton, which commanded the highest market price, and pay 
for it in gold; that with a large annual crop we could maintain 
a credit that would enable us to secure the means to provide for 
our troops and prosecute the war. At first he found but few sup- 
porters of this plan to finance the Confederacy, but as he dis- 
cussed and explained his purpose and ideas, many endorsed his 



176 NORTH CAROLINA 

views; and finally, when it was too late to carry out the scheme, 
there was a widely prevailing sentiment that he should be secre- 
tary of the treasury ; but he candidly told his friends that he was 
then unwilling to undertake the burden of the position. As a 
member of Congress, he was a loyal supporter of President Davis, 
and at the same time he did much in protecting North Carolina 
in her rights, and in looking after the welfare of her troops. 

Not only did he place great faith in cotton as a basis of credit 
for the government, but as a director and stockholder of the 
Wilmington and Weldon Railroad Company he urged it in vain 
to buy cotton and secure a credit in England to meet its bonded 
debt in 1867, when the property would likely be in a greatly run- 
down and depreciated condition, and its credit depending largely 
on the success or failure of the Confederate States. 

The close of the Civil War found this active business man and 
large property-owner apparently hopelessly insolvent, principally 
on account of security debts; but instead of taking the benefit 
of the bankrupt law, he struggled along until he finally satisfied 
all his creditors. 

Disfranchised from the practice of his profession in many of 
the courts, with his property involved and farming conditions 
entireh' changed, he accepted the presidency of the Wilmington 
and Weldon Railroad Company in the fall of 1865, and began 
the work that made for him a national reputation. 

He seems to have given his first great concern and efforts in 
making provision for the bonded debt of the road to mature about 
two years hence. He went to England to try to arrange for a 
refund or extension of the debt; but failing, he returned and 
reported to his directors, who left it to his good judgment to do 
the best he could. 

As there was no Southern city with sufficient money at that time 
to finance the enterprise, he proceeded to Baltimore to consult 
capitalists who were Southern sympathizers. Here he secured the 
attention of Messrs. William T. Walters and Benjamin F. New- 
comer, who agreed to see that the early maturing debt was cared 
for and the property improved, if they and their friends could 



ROBERT RUFUS BRIDGERS 177 

secure a controlling interest in the stock of the company, to guard 
against injudicious management or conduct inimical to the bond- 
holders. Convinced that this was for the best interests of the 
company and the stockholders of this impoverished property, Mr. 
Bridgers returned home, and after a free and candid disclosure 
of the plans and purposes, purchased for the Baltimore capitalists 
the stock which the State of North Carolina held in the company 
and enough additional from private institutions and individuals 
to secure the requisite control ; and the Messrs. Bridgers, Walters 
& Newcomer began the improvement and operation of the prop- 
erty, which has played an important part in the history of North 
Carolina and in the railroad development of the country. 

As an evidence of the physical condition of the road when he 
was elected president, it would warrant a schedule speed of only 
ten miles per hour. He was president of the Wilmington and 
Weldon Railroad Company from November, 1865, until his death, 
a period of twenty-three consecutive years. He was also president 
of several other roads of the Atlantic coast line system, notably 
the Wilmington, Columbia and Augusta. He was for years 
general manager of their property, including the Charlotte, 
Columbia and Augusta Road in South Carolina. A few years 
prior to his death, at his urgent request, he was permitted to 
retire from the general managership, and to name as his successor 
Mr. Harry Walters, who is now one of the foremost financiers 
and railroad men of this country, and is fast acquiring an inter- 
national reputation. 

Messrs. Walters, Newcomer and Bridgers became devoted and 
lasting friends, as well as business associates, and the three always 
worked most harmoniously in laying the foundation and develop- 
ing the great "Atlantic Coast Line." 

It is not proposed to follow his railroad work in detail, or even 
its development, but rather to refer to isolated facts and inci- 
dents indicative of his methods and characteristics. 

First of all, he studied surrounding conditions, and all men 
with whom he came in contact. He knew his employees, his 
competitors and his patrons, as well as being thoroughly familiar 



178 NORTH CAROLINA 

with the business methods, the trade and the lands and products 
of his entire territory. 

His knowledge of his employees, their history, character and 
habits, was remarkable, and accounted for many unexpected pro- 
motions and disappointments among the men. He felt a personal 
interest in them, and never lost an opportunity to encourage the 
industrious or to urge his employees to "lay up something for a 
rainy day." While ever ready to aid the deserving, he despised 
secret vice and deceit, and shunned those whom he thought guilty. 
Many humble homes of employees were made comfortable, and 
their widows and orphans saved from poverty and charity by his 
timely suggestions, example and encouragement ; and he naturally 
enjoyed their love and esteem. After the attending physician 
announced to the anxious, loving watchers by his bedside, "He's 
gone," the next words fell from the lips of his faithful servant 
and porter, who spoke more eloquently than he knew when he 
said, "God knows the poor man on the road has lost a friend 
now." 

He studied his competitors, was always liberal in his estimate of 
their ability, and by fair and honorable dealing with them never 
failed to enjoy their confidence and esteem. 

He enjoyed an extensive acquaintance with and of the patrons 
of his roads; and when not inconsistent with his ideas of right 
and justice, he endeavored to conciliate and work harmoniously 
with them. As he often expressed it, "We are neighbors." He 
always tried to deal with the public according to the business 
methods with which they were accustomed, contending that in 
many things it was proper and desirable to do so, even if it made 
unimportant exceptions to general rules. Speaking of an able 
official of another system, he once expressed the opinion that he 
had injured his railroad reputation by his work in the South, 
because he insisted upon dealing with the people of Virginia, 
North Carolina and South Carolina, without exceptions to his 
fixed rules or regard for the local customs and ideas of 
generations. 

Knowing the present conditions, he next forecasted the future. 



ROBERT RUFUS BRIDGERS 179 

and really devoted his best efforts to making ready for new 
conditions. If called upon to characterize in one word the great- 
est factor in his wonderful achievements, we should promptly and 
unhesitatingly say, Preparation. This was demonstrated in his 
college course ; in building up his constitution that he might stand 
hard work ; in the liberal treatment of his lands for the production 
of enormous crops; in his financial policy for the Confederate 
Government and the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad Com- 
pany; and in many other matters. When a competing line was 
once spreading out, he said to Mr. Paul C. Cameron, in discussing 
it, "We do not propose to spread out until our property becomes 
valuable to its stockholders. It will be time enough to reach out 
when our financial condition is established on a dividend basis." 

But preparation means progress. He advocated, and in the 
early seventies the Atlantic Coast Line prepared for, through 
train service, which system is now so fully developed along the 
respective lines of speed, safety and comfort. He was one of 
the most prominent men in the movements for standard time, 
being for a long time president of the "Southern Railway Time 
Convention," and later first vice-president of the general time 
convention, the former having been organized several years before 
the latter. 

Mr. Bridgers always tried to anticipate the skilful moves and 
brilliant efforts of his competitors. It was along this line that 
portions of the road between Wilson and Florence via Fayette- 
ville and sections of roads in other States were built when there 
was no apparent necessity for the same, although self-supporting 
as branch roads. But the wisdom of this was evident when other 
lines began to compete for Florida and other Southern business, 
and the Atlantic Coast Line had only to build connecting links to 
have shorter lines. 

He was uniformly polite, and would not countenance dis- 
courtesy in the employees of the company. He once stated in the 
presence of a number of railroad officials, soon after resigning 
the office of general manager, that if called upon to name the 
single official act that had been most beneficial to the service in 



i8o NORTH CAROLINA 

its relation to the public, he would point to the discharge of a 
ticket agent who was rude and discourteous to a passenger, an 
elderly gentleman who applied for information about the schedule 
of a certain train and in the hearing of Mr. Bridgers. The dis- 
charge was immediate and permanent. 

He was scrupulously honest and intensely loyal. He once knew 
of some contemplated action that would greatly enhance the value 
of the Wilmington and Weldon stock, and stated the fact to one 
of his sons, who secured an option on a large block of the stock. 
But his father made him surrender the option, and not one of the 
family made a purchase until the public knew of the enhanced 
value. Another instance of his loyalty to the road and his Balti- 
more friends was his refusal to accept an office with a competing 
line at nearly double any salary ever paid to him by the Atlantic 
Coast Line ; while the offer of still another system for his services, 
at a salary to be fixed by himself, was likewise refused. 

But he had other business interests. He was prominent in the 
management of the Navassa Guano Company and one of the 
Wilmington Banks, besides owning large tracts of land in Florida 
and plantations on the Roanoke River. 

This great business man was full of charity and good deeds; 
but the most charming feature of this noble trait was his abhor- 
rence of display or publicity. The person that disclosed his 
generosity was not likely to be aided the second time. 

Mr. Bridgers married Miss Margaret Elizabeth Johnston on 
the I2th of December, 1849. Their family was a large and happy 
one, blessed as it was with a devoted husband and an indulgent, 
loving father. 

He died of apoplexy, after an illness of less than two hours, on 
the loth of December, 1888. He was stricken while discussing 
some proposed railroad legislation before a committee of the 
South Carolina legislature at Columbia. And thus this successful 
business man laid down his life's work while yet in harness. 

/. T. Barron. 




BEDFORD BROWN 




JEDFORD BROWN, a statesman distinguished 
during a long public career for his talents, 
integrity of character and strenuous adherence 
to his political principles, was born in Caswell 
County, according to the statement of Dr. 
Kemp P. Battle, in 1792, although in sketches 
written during his own lifetime the date is fixed as 1795. 

His father, Jethro Brown, was of English descent, the family 
having come originally to America from Bedfordshire, England. 
On his maternal side, Mr. Brown was likewise of English stock, 
his mother, who was Miss Lucy Williamson, being a member of 
the well-known family of that name that has so long been prom- 
inent in the social annals of Caswell County. 

In 1813 and 1814 Mr. Brown was a student at the University of 
North Carolina; and in August, 1815, when, according to Dr. 
Battle's statement, he was twenty-two years of age, he was elected 
a representative from Caswell County, along with Romulus M. 
Saunders as his colleague, and having begun public life at that 
early age, he served in the legislature almost continuously for 
fourteen years. 

Mr. Brown had in boyhood imbibed the spirit of the Kentucky 
Resolutions of 1798, and was a warm supporter of President 
Madison. Throughout his earlier career he was devotedly 
attached to the doctrine of State's Rights, and apparently shared 



i82 NORTH CAROLINA ,i 

in the views so forcibly expressed by Mr. Macon, that 
on that foundation alone could the liberties of the people be 
preserved. 

While in the legislature he sided with Jackson as against Clay 
and Adams, and contributed to the vote of North Carolina being 
given to General Jackson. 

Hon. John Branch having in March, 1829, resigned his position 
as United States senator to take the portfolio as secretary of the 
navy in Jackson's Cabinet, the legislature that fall was to fill the 
vacancy, and the public men of the State were active in their 
efforts to secure the prize. There was still but one party, but 
President Jackson was making fierce and relentless war on the 
friends of Clay and Adams. William B. Meares was a friend of 
Clay, and he was one of the strongest men in the State; indeed. 
Judge Gaston had said that he was the fittest of them all to repre- 
sent North Carolina in the Senate. Judge John R. Donnell, also 
a strong man, had been on the bench for ten years, and was not 
embroiled in party rancor. Montford Stokes had already once 
been senator, and still was so popular that the next year he was 
elected governor of the State. S. P. Carson, who had the highest 
fame for wonderful eloquence and was much beloved at the west, 
was a warm supporter of Jackson. These were the principal 
candidates, although there were many others who were in a state 
of anxious expectancy. Finally, after many ballots, all but the 
first three named withdrew, and on the twelfth ballot, at the end 
of one week of heated contest, Stokes withdrew ; but Charles 
Fisher entered the race with fair prospect of success. On the 
fourteenth ballot, however, both he and Judge Donnell withdrew ; 
and Meares alone remained of the original candidates. On the 
fifteenth and last ballot he received his highest vote, eighty-six, 
and there were seven scattering. Bedford Brown was the speaker 
of the senate, and on that ballot the friends of the candidates who 
were withdrawn supported him, and he received ninety-five votes, 
being one more than was necessary for an election. It has been 
said that no election was intended or expected on that ballot, and 
that one more vote was given him than was anticipated ; but how- 



BEDFORD BROWN 183 

ever that may be, he was elected, and began a senatorial career 
that was highly creditable to him. 

In the Senate he became a personal friend of President Jackson, 
who knew so well how to attach men to him, and he resolutely 
adhered to the administration and its policies throughout all the 
exciting events of that period. As senator he was regarded as a 
strong man. "He spoke with great deliberation and emphasis, 
and was careful in the selection of his language. His manners 
were polished and dignified, and in debate he was respectful even 
to his opponents. He neither gave offense nor submitted to it 
from others. He was no orator, nor even an attractive speaker. 
He lacked the graces which persuade or win the confidence of 
others, but he was forcible in logic, earnest in speech and emphatic 
in manner." "I have often seen him," says Judge Schenck, "sur- 
rounded by distinguished men, and he was the politest among them 
all, and his manners the most courtly. He was a sincere man, 
self-confident, fearless and frank, loyal to his convictions, and 
using no art to enforce his views, and disdaining dissimulation or 
sophistry." 

He sustained the President, notwithstanding his State's Rights 
views, in his proceedings against the Nullifiers in South Carolina, 
and thus became alienated from those members of his party in 
North Carolina who supported Calhoun, but the administration, 
notwithstanding the defection of Henry Clay and the National 
Republicans and of the Calhoun men, still retained control of the 
State, and on the expiration of his term he was re-elected to the 
Senate, continuing to support President Jackson and the admin- 
istration of President Van Buren. 

After the adoption of the new constitution in 1835, and on the 
issue of Internal Improvements, the Whigs became the dominant 
power in the State, and having control of the legislature in 1840, 
they instructed the North Carolina senators to vote to charter a 
United States Bank. Both Judge Strange and Mr. Brown de- 
clined to obey these instructions, preferring to resign rather than 
to do so, and they tendered their resignations to Governor Dudley, 
which were accepted. Judge Mangum was elected to replace Mr. 



1 84 NORTH CAROLINA 

Brown and Governor Graham to replace Judge Strange ; and 
on the expiration of Governor Graham's term Mr. Brown, who 
was again the senator from Caswell County in the legislature, 
became a candidate for the United States Senate. In that 
Assembly the Democrats had a considerable majority in both 
Houses, but the factional differences between the supporters of 
Calhoun and those of Van Buren's administration had not sub- 
sided. Mr. Brown's old colleague in the legislature, likewise from 
Caswell County, Judge Romulus M. Saunders, was warmly sup- 
ported by the Calhoun wing of the party, while Mr. Brown was 
the candidate of the regular administration wing. Caucus after 
caucus was held, and much bitterness was developed during a 
heated and angry contest. It has been said that factional ani- 
mosity ran so high that many of Brown's friends would have 
preferred the election of Governor Graham to that of his opponent, 
while Judge Saunders's supporters would not give way. As a 
result of this fierce conflict, both of the principal aspirants were 
set aside, and the Hon. William H. Haywood was elected by the 
combined vote of the two wings of the Democratic Party. Dis- 
satisfied at the course of events, Mr. Brown shortly afterward 
left the State and moved to Missouri, with the purpose of retiring 
forever from public affairs ; but he did not remain long in his 
Western home, and returned to North Carolina, and resided for 
some years near Baltimore, in Maryland, superintending the edu- 
cation of his children. 

In 1858 he was, however, again in the State Senate, and mani- 
fested his former interest in public matters, which then were 
apparently approaching a crisis. He was returned to the Senate 
in i860, and led the opposition to the secession movement. In this 
he was entirely consistent with his course in 1832 and 1833, when 
he sustained Jackson's measures against South Carolina ; and 
although he so hotly advocated the preservation of the reserved 
rights of the States, he proposed to contend for them within the 
Union and under the Constitution. But when at length the war 
burst on the South, "the martial spirit and proud heart of the 
old patriot became thoroughly aroused, and the South had no 



BEDFORD BROWN 185 

firmer supporter than Bedford Brown." He represented his 
county in the convention of 1861, and "being forced into the 
fight, with courageous resolution he determined to bear himself so 
that his enemy would fear him. He spurned compromises and 
despised trimmers, and advocated a most vigorous prosecution of 
the war." Such, says Judge Schenck, was his attitude in the 
convention of 1861 ; and such was his attitude in the Senate of 
1862 at its first session; but at the special session of 1863 he 
sided in some measure with the faction led by Judge Boyden in 
the Senate that was not in harmonious accord with the Con- 
federate administration, by supporting which alone was there any 
reasonable hope or expectation that all the bloodshed and suffer- 
ings endured by the Southern people would not be in vain. 

He was not re-elected to the legislature of 1864, but was a 
member of the Reconstruction Convention of 1865, and took a 
prominent part in the measures of that body restoring the State 
to the Union. 

After the State government then established was overthrown 
and effaced by act of Congress in 1867, his constituents and 
friends in Caswell County again elected him to the Senate in 
1868, but he was not admitted as a member of that body. He 
received the certificate of election, but along with others whose 
disabilities had not been removed, he was not allowed to take his 
seat, but John W. Stephens, afterwards killed, was sworn in as 
senator in his stead. He witnessed the turmoils of the next year, 
and lived through the excited period of the Kirk and Holden 
War, when Caswell County was declared in a state of insurrection, 
and subjected to martial law, and he saw hundreds of the best 
people of his county, neighbors and friends, incarcerated by irre- 
sponsible military power. He survived, however, to see the 
assembling of the legislature of 1870, expiring on December 6, 
1870, at the age of seventy-eight. 

S. A. Ashe. 




JOSEPH GILL BROWN 




[OSEPH GILL BROWN was born in the city 
of Raleigh November 5, 1854. His father, 
Henry Jerome Brown, was a successful busi- 
ness man of unswerving integrity, industry and 
sound common sense, and of such a respectable 
character as to enjoy the esteem and good will 
of the entire communit)-. His mother, Lydia Lane, a daughter 
of Nathaniel Lane, was a woman of fine judgment and power, 
whose lovely characteristics were an inspiration to her son, and 
who was most exemplary in all the relations of life. She was a 
granddaughter of James Lane, a brother of Joel, Jesse and Joseph 
Lane of Wake County, all sons of Joseph Lane of Halifax County, 
among whose descendants may be counted a list of distinguished 
men and women that can hardly be exceeded by any other family 
in the South. 

Mr. Brown is also a descendant of Colonel Needham Bryan of 
Johnston County, one of the leading men of the province in 
colonial days, member of the Provincial Congresses, and distin- 
guished as a sterling patriot during the Revolution. 

In youth the subject of this sketch was robust, studious and of 
an amiable and cheerful disposition. He attended the Lovejoy 
Academy at Raleigh, and was a pupil of Captain J. J. Fray, an 
equally fine preceptor. Having made fine progress in his studies, 
at the age of sixteen he was matriculated at Trinity College, then 




ChaS Z.. I^n iS/ijp/7ef7 I^ub/iahsr 



%^^, SfrSBi™^ ^^.-^ A 'J-" 




JOSEPH GILL BROWN 187 

located in Randolph County. Here he spent only a year and a 
half, but to his great advantage ; and the influence on him of the 
distinguished president, Dr. Craven, and of the professors was 
deep and abiding. He has often expressed regret that he left 
college before graduation, but despite the fact that he received 
scarcely the half of a college education, measured by years, yet 
he was such a diligent student that he profited as much during 
his short course as many a graduate would have done in a full 
term of four years. 

Shortly after returning home from college he secured a sub- 
ordinate position in the Citizens' National Bank at Raleigh, under 
Colonel William E. Anderson, whose kindly and sympathetic 
assistance he remembers with gratitude and affection. Colonel 
Anderson was an excellent officer, and under his training Mr. 
Brown developed those traits and business habits which after- 
ward were so potent in bringing him success in his career as a 
bank official. Naturally, he was highly gifted. But in particular 
he was attentive, careful and precise. It is sometimes said that a 
man's handwriting is an index to the habits of his mind; and 
Mr. Brown was precise in his handwriting, and particularly in 
the formation of his figures. Everything he did was done with 
clearness, despatch and neatness. It was a pleasure to him to do 
his work; because he always did it well, and it invariably gave 
satisfaction and received recognition from his superiors. Step 
by step he was promoted until at length he became cashier, and in 
this position his fine business qualifications became still more 
apparent, and his usefulness was fully realized. 

Upon the death of Colonel Anderson, Dr. William J. Hawkins 
was made president of the bank. He was a man of unusual ability, 
but having no personal relations with the business men of the 
community. On the other hand, Mr. Brown had grown into the 
favor of all the active business men, and drew them closer to the 
bank. His manners were so agreeable, his personality so pleas- 
ing, and his business was so admirably conducted that year by 
year he took a stronger hold on the public, gaining constantly 
in esteem and confidence and in personal regard. Eventually, on 



NORTH CAROLINA 



the death of Dr. Hawkins, Mr. Brown, on November 5, 1894, 
was called by the directors to take charge of the institution as its 
president. As auspicious as had been the opening of his career, 
he now achieved a still greater measure of success. No one 
surpassed him in carefulness and attention to business, none ex- 
celled him in promptness, in courtesy and in an efficient discharge 
of his duties. Considerate of others, and intent on subserving the 
interest of his customers, he managed the affairs of the bank with 
such remarkable prudence that it made no losses, while the wisdom 
of his general course is attested by the gratifying results of his 
administration during the past decade. The bank had always 
stood well with the public, and after he became its president it 
entered on a career reflecting the highest credit on him as an able 
and wise financier. Gradually, from the beginning, the bank 
had enlarged its deposits, until when he was elected president 
they had reached the sum of $333,000; but under his administra- 
tion in ten years the deposits increased to $925,000. In like 
manner, the assets of the institution, which in 1894 were $490,000, 
are now $1,250,000. It has been a cardinal point with President 
Brown to have a surplus equal to his capital; and this he has 
accomplished while paying substantial dividends to the stock- 
holders and carrying a considerable amoimt of undivided profits, 
so that the value of the stock of the bank on the market is 
over 200. Indeed, the bank not only stands among the first in 
North Carolina, but it has taken its place on the roll of honor 
among the soundest and safest of the National Banks of the 
United States. 

Necessarily, Mr. Brown's reputation as an efiicient officer has 
grown and passed beyond the limits of the State, so that not 
only has he been elected to the presidency of the North Carolina 
State Bankers' Association, but he is a member of the Executive 
Council of the American Bankers' Association, and is justly held 
in the highest esteem by the most eminent bank men of the Union. 

It often happens that a faithful and capable official, combining 
administrative ability with prudence and tact and good judgment, 
achieves remarkable success in his work; but even something 



JOSEPH GILL BROWN 189 

more than this is to be said of Mr. Brown. In every department 
where he has worked he has attained unusual prominence, and 
that without there being any element of immodesty or of self- 
seeking in his character. He is retiring and amiable and far 
removed from bold, forward aggressiveness. But there is a plain- 
ness, a frankness, a truthfulness about him that at once attracts 
attention and awakens confidence; and no matter in what com- 
pany he may be thrown, he is speedily recognized as a man of the 
first water. 

At the meeting of the American Bankers' Association, held at 
New Orleans in November, 1902, Mr. Brown was called on to 
make an address on the subject of the New South. His business 
in life had not led him to cultivate the arts of oratory, but even 
as a speaker he is captivating. The sweetness of his voice, the 
grace of his manner and the easy flow of his words charm those 
who hear him. With an attractive bearing, the association gave 
him a ready attention. Still, the members, drawn largely from 
the Northern cities of the Union, were hardly prepared for the 
literary repast he spread before them. Entering on the activities 
of life after the South had settled down to its new work, with 
the war period far in the past, it might have been expected that 
Mr. Brown would have followed in the footsteps of many others 
who have attributed the marvellous development of the Southern 
States in recent years to novel causes, and that he would ascribe 
the prosperity of the Southern people to a new life infused by 
Northern agencies. But not so. His address was entirely philo- 
sophical, and it is one of the most notable and admirable expo- 
sitions of the New South which has ever fallen from the lips of 
a Southern man. Indeed, it was a marvellous performance for 
a young bank officer on such an occasion. He described the South 
as she existed prior to the Civil War, and drew a picture of the 
devastated country at the end of those four years of arduous 
struggle, during which all of her resources were exhausted. 
"There was nothing to build upon, however," said he, "save the 
uncared-for land and the indomitable pluck of the people. The 
story that tells of their struggles and their difficulties, their fail- 



I90 NORTH CAROLINA 

ures and their victories, is one of thrilling interest, but I can 
undertake only to present a few figures to show results. Interest- 
ing, indeed, are the figures that tell of her wonderful prosperity. 
But before presenting these figures, let me say that the topic 
assigned me is a misleading one. There is no New South, except 
as there is a New North or East or West. Ours is the same Old 
South which in the early days of the Republic gave her sons to 
freedom, and in days of peace gave them to her country as states- 
men to aid in building up for her the greatest and best govern- 
ment the world has ever known. ... I have told you that the 
South had practically nothing at the close of the war. The world 
looked on in amazement at the ease with which the French Re- 
public met the installments of the enormous penalty imposed by 
her victorious foe at the close of the Franco-German War. The 
South, after enduring a war four times as long, paid in one vast 
lump sum a penalty five times as large, the money value of her 
slaves being that much greater than the amount demanded of the 
French. No country ever rallied from such desolation with such 
spirit and vigor as she displayed — a result due not more to her 
abounding natural resources than to the spirit and pluck of her 
sons and daughters. Tried in the severest furnace, she has proved 
to the world that she is worthy of its confidence, and that in her 
and in her people are to be found the real elements of moral and 
material wealth. Her wealth to-day equals that of the entire 
country in i860, and practically all this has been created since 
the close of the Civil War. At the beginning of this new century 
a thousand millions of dollars would barely tell the amount of 
capital the South has invested in her manufacturing enterprises 
alone, and she is annually putting on the markets of the world 
her own handiwork to the value of more than one and a half 
billions of dollars. The capital invested in manufacturing has 
increased in one decade in the South 348 per cent., against an 
increase of only 252 per cent, in the United States ; while in the 
value of products the increase in the South has been 220 per cent., 
against 142 per cent, in the nation. The increase in the value of 
farm property has been in the South 92 per cent, and in the United 



JOSEPH GILL BROWN 191 

States only 67 per cent. Within these ten years the banking 
resources of the South have been increased by about three hundred 
milHons, aggregating now more than eight hundred millions." 

And thus he continued, declaring that there was no New South, 
but only a development under the new conditions, and that the 
work was the labor and achievements of Southern men, whose 
capacity and energy and moral worth challenged the admiration 
and were entitled to the confidence of the world. And Mr. Brown 
boldly took the position that the course of the Southern whites 
in respect to the colored population, limiting suffrage to those 
only who could read and write, was on the same wise line as 
Southern action had been which had brought about all this 
marvellous material development; and he declared, "Already the 
benefits are manifest in the impetus that has been given to the 
cause of education. And unless our wisest men are mistaken, 
a few years will convince the world of the wisdom of what now 
seems to be rather heroic action. Let criticism be withheld until 
results are seen. We ask your patience and we claim your 
confidence." 

This remarkable and admirable address, delivered before the 
assembled bankers of the Union, was pervaded by a manly spirit 
of high citizenship ; and Mr. Brown, in presenting the picture 
of the South in its various aspects, insisted that Southern achieve- 
ment in every field of industry and statesmanship entitled her 
people to the sympathy and confidence of the business men of 
the North ; that it was a sure guarantee of the moral worth of her 
sons and of their capacity, intelligence and superior wisdom. In 
concluding, he made a strong and earnest plea for the cessation of 
those sectional differences and of those misunderstandings which 
had arrayed the Northern people so solidly against their Southern 
fellow-citizens. "Away with sectionalism forever !" he exclaimed ; 
"let our topic be no more the North or the South, but forevermore 
the Union. We are brethren; let us live as such. And hence- 
forth in this glad land of ours let men be recognized for fitness 
only, and not because of their local habitation." 

The speech throughout abounded in flights of genuine elo- 



192 NORTH CAROLINA 

quence, and its sentiments elicited warm praise from all who 
heard it and all who have had the pleasure of reading it. It 
bespeaks the man; earnest, sincere, capable and with a broad 
and liberal mind, and yet devoted to his people and true to their 
good fame. It awoke admiration among the Northern bankers, 
and from that day Mr. Brown has been honored in banking circles 
from Boston to San Francisco. He was placed on the Executive 
Council of the American Bankers' Association, and has constantly 
received renewed evidence of the high regard and esteem in which 
he is held. 

Again, at the meeting of the American Bankers' Association 
in September, 1904, he was called on to make an address, which 
not only sustained his reputation, but gave him a still stronger 
standing among the eminent bankers of the Union. His portrayal 
of the vast results of Southern industry and Southern capability 
and his expression of admiration at the achievements of Southern 
men in the various fields of enterprise have without doubt been 
of large advantage to the Southern States in inspiring confidence 
among the business men and capitalists of the North and assur- 
edly Mr. Brown's contribution in this way to the future develop- 
ment of Southern interests has been of inestimable value to the 
Southern people. 

In 1881 Mr. Brown was happily married to Miss Alice Burk- 
head, the accomplished daughter of Rev. L. S. Burkhead, D.D., 
an eminent minister of the M. E. Church, South ; and he has been 
most fortunate in his domestic relations. 

In his religious affiliations he is a Methodist, and has been 
exemplary in discharging every religious duty. He has long been 
the superintendent of the Sunday-school of the Edenton Street 
Methodist Church, which has grown from a small beginning to 
be the largest, with a single exception, in the city of Raleigh, and 
one of the largest in the State. 

He has been a steward in his church for many years, and is a 
trustee and treasurer of the Methodist Orphanage ; and is a mem- 
ber of the Epworth League Board of the Methodist Church South, 
and has been a representative twice in the General Conference, 



JOSEPH GILL BROWN 193 

and a representative to the Missionary Ecumenical Conference 
in New York ; and he had the high honor of being appointed by 
the College of Bishops as a delegate to attend the World's Ecu- 
menical Council in London, England. 

Mr. Brown has been Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the 
Independent Order of Odd Fellows in the State and Grand Rep- 
resentative to the Sovereign Grand Lodge of the World. He 
has been treasurer of the city of Raleigh for more than twenty 
years. He is a trustee of the Olivia Raney Library and president 
of the Associated Charities of Raleigh, and is the president of the 
Raleigh Clearing House Association. In fact, he is one of the 
comparatively small group of men to be found in every city who, 
full of business cares and responsibilities, still manage to lend a 
helping hand and give a cheerful voice to every movement within 
the church or in the city at large which tends to help others and 
promote the public good. His power and capacity in managing 
such affairs is thoroughly recognized in his community and by 
those with whom he is associated, and while much is to be ascribed 
to his native ability, yet he feels that his success in these various 
fields of endeavor is largely to be attributed to the lessons learned 
at Trinity, and he recognizes a debt to his Alma Mater which 
long service on the board of trustees of the college and his per- 
sistent efforts to advance the interests of that institution have not 
yet cancelled. 

In reply to an invitation to offer suggestions to young men, he 
wrote: "Most confidential relations at home, absolute purity of 
life, thorough identification with some orthodox church, freedom 
from sectionalism, regarding the home town and the State as part 
and parcel of our common country." 

That the South's most important interests are in the hands of 
such men as Mr. Brown is at once the explanation of her past 
progress and the harbinger of her future prosperity. 

5". A. Ashe. 





EPHRAIM BREVARD 

;PHRAIM BREVARD, author of the Mecklen- 
burg Declaration of Independence, physician, 
teacher, soldier and patriot, was born in Mary- 
land in 1744. When about four years of age 
he came to North Carolina with his parents, 
who settled a few miles east of Mount Mourne, 
Iredell County. He was the son of John Brevard, and his mother 
was a sister of the Rev. Alexander McWhorter, president of 
Queen's College of Charlotte. His father, who died early in the 
Revolution, was a member of the Committee of Safety of Rowan 
County and of the convention which met at Halifax on the 17th of 
November, 1776, and framed the first constitution. His mother's 
house was burned by Tarleton on the ist of February, 1781, 
because she had "seven sons in the rebel army." A sister, Mary, 
was the wife of General William Lee Davidson, and another 
sister, Jane, was the wife of General Ephraim Davidson. A 
brother, Alexander, with General Joseph Graham, Major John 
Davidson and General Peter Forney, erected Vesuvius Furnace 
in Lincoln County. His cousin, Adlai Osborne, who was gradu- 
ated with him from Princeton, was clerk of the court of Rowan 
before and after the Revolution, and one of the first trustees of the 
University of North Carolina. About 1776 he married a daughter 
of Colonel Thomas Polk, whose brother, Ezekiel Polk, was the 



EPHRAIM BREVARD 195 

grandfather of President James K. Polk. His wife lived only- 
three or fours years. 

In 1 76 1 he went to a grammar school in Prince Edward County, 
Virginia, but the following year he returned to North Carolina 
and entered a noted school near his father's home, conducted 
successively by Joseph Alexander, nephew of John McKnitt Alex- 
ander; David Caldwell and Joel Benedict. In 1768 he was gradu- 
ated at Princeton, and soon thereafter began the study of medicine 
under Dr. Alexander Ramsey of South Carolina, a distinguished 
patriot and historian as well as physician. 

He took an interest in the advancement of learning, and aided 
in the establishment of Queen's College of Charlotte, which was 
chartered by the colonial legislatures of 1770 and 1771 (both of 
which were repeated by the king) and by the General Assembly 
of 1777 under the name of Liberty Hall Academy. For a time 
he served the institution as a member of its faculty. When the 
first meeting of the new board of trustees was held on the 3d of 
June, 1778, he, Isaac Alexander and Rev. Thomas H. McCaule 
were appointed to frame a system of laws for the government of 
the institution, and a few months later he was appointed a member 
of the committee to elect a president. This institution was located 
upon the spot where the present county court-house now stands. 
Some of its bricks are in the present court-house and in the 
Y. M. C. A. building across the street. In this lot are buried 
Ephraim Brevard and his wife, who died a few years previous 
to him. 

On the 19th of May, 1775, two men from each captain's com- 
pany assembled in Charlotte upon the call of Colonel Thomas 
Polk to consult for the common good, and inaugurate such 
measures as would conduce to that desirable end. After the 
organization of the convention by the elections of Abraham Alex- 
ander as chairman and John McKnitt Alexander as secretary, 
there was a full and free discussion upon the exciting topics of 
the day, in the midst of which a messenger arrived bearing the 
news of the affair of a month previous at Lexington. A com- 
mittee consisting of Dr. Ephraim Brevard, Colonel William' 



196 NORTH CAROLINA 

Kennon and the Rev. Hezekiah J. Balch, who had taken an active 
part in the proceedings, were appointed to prepare resolutions 
suitable to the occasion. Ephraim Brevard wrote the resolutions, 
and they were submitted to the convention by the committee, 
adopted unanimously after midnight, and read the following noon 
from the steps of the old court-house by Colonel Thomas Polk. 
These resolutions constitute the Mecklenburg Declaration of Inde- 
pendence. The day of their adoption has been assigned a place 
upon the State Flag, and in commemoration of the event the 
20th of May has been made a legal holiday in North Carolina. 
Ephraim Brevard was secretary of the convention of the 31st of 
May, 1775, which adopted regulations in furtherance of the con- 
vention of the 20th of May previous. 

While engaged as a teacher in Queen's College, Ephraim 
Brevard raised a company from the young men of that institution 
to assist in putting down the Tories assembled on the Cape Fear. 
They marched in the direction of Cross Creek (Fayetteville), but 
upon hearing of the dispersion of the Tories, returned home. 
This was in February, after his return from the "Snow cam- 
paign" with General Rutherford in December, 1775. 

In 1776, in his professional capacity, he joined the expedition 
of General Rutherford during the Cherokee campaign. In 1780 
he entered the Southern army under General Lincoln as assistant 
surgeon. He was captured at the surrender of Charleston on 
May 1 2th, and during his confinement there as a prisoner of war 
he suffered so much from impure air and unwholesome diet on 
the prison ship that his health gave way. On his release he turned 
his face homeward, but died after reaching the home of his friend 
and fellow-patriot, John McKnitt Alexander. In the language 
of Foote, "He thought clearly, felt deeply, wrote well, resisted 
bravely, and died a martyr to that liberty none loved better and 
few understood so well." 

W. A. Withers. 




EDWARD BUNCOMBE 




[T the bloody battle of Germantown, in the State 
of Pennsylvania, fought on the 4th of October, 
1777, were killed and wounded many of the 
bravest and best soldiers sent by North Caro- 
lina to fight for independence. From the 
brigade commander, General Nash, down to no 
less patriotic privates, many were those who crowned honorable 
lives by glorious deaths and were laid to rest far from the State 
which sent them forth on their errand of danger. Among those 
mortally wounded was Colonel Edward Buncombe, of the Fifth 
North Carolina Continental Regiment, who survived the battle 
many months, and died a prisoner of war in the city of Phila- 
delphia in May, 1778, during the British occupation of that place. 
Colonel Buncombe was born of English parentage on the island 
of St. Christopher (otherwise St. Kitt's), in the West Indies, in 
the year 1742, and was educated in England. In 1768, or there- 
abouts, he came to North Carolina to take possession of an estate 
in the present county of Washington (then a part of Tyrrell), 
which had been bequeathed him by an uncle. Thereon he built 
Buncombe Hall, a hospitable mansion, which was standing as late 
as 1865, but was then demolished. In 1771 Colonel Buncombe 
was a justice of the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions for the 
county of Tyrrell, and about the same time became colonel of 
provincial troops in Tyrrell County. This latter rank under the 



198 NORTH CAROLINA 

royal government he held up to the outbreak of the Revolution. 
At the beginning of the war for independence, Buncombe's first 
service was in the militia, being appointed a colonel of that branch 
of the service on the 9th of September, 1775, by the Provincial 
Congress at Hillsboro. On the 17th of April, 1776, he was trans- 
ferred to the Continental Line, or regulars, and therein com- 
missioned as colonel of the Fifth North Carolina Regiment. This 
regiment was assigned to General Moore's, afterward Nash's, 
North Carolina Brigade of Continentals, which was organized at 
Wilmington in the summer of 1776. These troops left Wilming- 
ton in November of the year last named to join Washington, but 
when Halifax was reached another order came which directed 
their march southward to the vicinity of St. Augustine. Before 
reaching that point, still another countermanding order stopped 
them at Charleston, South Carolina. At Haddrell's Point, near 
Charleston, the brigade camped for the winter of 1776-77. In 
March, 1777, having again received orders to join the main army 
under Washington, Nash's brigade marched northward through 
South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and other 
intervening States, and reached general headquarters at Middle- 
brook, where they were joyfully greeted by their compatriots 
with "a salutation of thirteen cannon, each fired thirteen times." 

On the nth of September, 1777, Colonel Buncombe's regi- 
ment, with the other North Carolina troops, fought at the battle 
of Brandywine. At the battle of Germantown, on the 4th of 
October, the same command was again engaged, and this proved 
Colonel Buncombe's last fight. In the course of that action he was 
shot down and left for dead on the field. Being recognized by a 
British officer who had been his schoolmate in England, he was 
removed to Philadelphia (then occupied by the British) and 
paroled within the city limits. Here his condition began to im- 
prove; but owing to a fall while walking in his sleep (he being 
often given to somnambulism), his wound opened afresh and he 
bled to death. This was in the middle of the month of May, 1778. 

Colonel Buncombe was buried on the corner of Arch and Fifth 
streets, in the "additional churchyard" of the parish of Christ 



EDWARD BUNCOMBE 



199 



Church. The exact spot where his remains are interred is 
unknown. 

On April 10, 1776, before coming to North Carolina, Colonel 
Buncombe was married at St. Christopher to Elizabeth Dawson 
Taylor, and this lady accompanied him to his new home. She died 
just prior to the Revolution, leaving three children, Elizabeth Ann 
Buncombe, who married John Goelet, formerly of New York; 
Thomas Buncombe, who died unmarried; and Hester Ann Bun- 
combe, who married John Clark. Of these, the first mentioned, 
Mrs. Goelet, is the only one who has descendants now living, as 
the two children of Mrs. Clark died without issue. 

The county of Buncombe, in Western North Carolina, which 
was established in 1791, is named in honor of the patriot whose 
services have been outlined in this sketch. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 






OTWAY BURNS 

rHEN the second war between America and 
Great Britain occurred, our young Republic was 
not a high-class sea power, and much of its 
naval warfare was carried on by privateers — 
vessels fitted up by individuals and stock com- 
panies — whose operations were authorized both 
by Congress and by international law. To this class belonged the 
Snap Dragon, commanded by Captain Otway Burns. 

Captain Burns was born in 177S, in Onslow County, North 
Carolina, on Queen's Creek, about two miles from the present 
village of Swannsboro. His father and grandfather both bore 
the name of Francis Burns, and the latter emigrated from Glas- 
gow, Scotland, in 1734. Otway Burns began his seafaring career 
in early life, and had command of a merchantman, which carried 
on its business operations along the Atlantic coast when the War 
of 1812-15 began. Designing to enter into privateering, he 
secured a fast and strong vessel in New York, which he christened 
the Snap Dragon. It was paid for and fitted up by a stock com- 
pany at New-Bern. It was well armed, and carried a crew varying 
in number from about 100 to 130 men. The number of his cap- 
tures was so exceedingly large that he soon became a terror to 
the British. 

In speaking of the war record of Burns, Chief Justice Clark said, 
on a public occasion: "He patrolled our ocean front and dis- 



OTWAY BURNS 201 



played the Union Jack from Cape Farewell, the southernmost 
point of Greenland, to Cape San Roque, the easternmost point of 
Brazil. He captured the enemy's vessels under the guns of Hali- 
fax and pounced upon them like a hawk upon a covey of doves, 
off the mouth of the Orinoco. For three years he was a terror 
to the British merchant marine, and inflicted damage only rivalled 
since by the Alabama and by another son of North Carolina, the 
gallant Waddell of the Shenandoah." 

In the "Tales and Traditions of the Lower Cape Fear," by 
James Sprunt, when speaking of privateers in the War of 1812, 
there is an interesting anecdote of Burns, as follows : "Tradition 
reports that on one occasion two of them came in together — ^the 
Snap Dragon, under Captain Otway Burns, who had at that time 
a considerable amount of local notoriety; and the Kemp, com- 
manded by Captain Almida, each accompanied by a merchant 
vessel which they had captured. In due time the vessels and 
cargoes were sold ; but when the proceeds of the sale were to be 
divided, a dispute arose between the two officers, each claiming 
that the larger portion should belong to him, as he was more 
instrumental in securing the prize than the other. The quarrel 
waxed hot, and it was feared that they would come to blows at 
any moment, when the fiery Burns put an end to the discussion 
by challenging his antagonist to meet him on the sea and fight it 
out yardarm to yardarm. The challenge was promptly accepted; 
each vessel got under way immediately and sailed for the 
appointed place of meeting; but while manoeuvering for position, 
a fleet of the enemy's merchantmen, under a convoy of a ship of 
war, hove in sight, and effectually put an end to the contemplated 
duel. Adjourning their quarrel to another time (but which was 
never renewed), they dashed into the fleet and succeeded in 
capturing two or three ships with valuable cargoes, and brought 
them safely into port — a much better result in every way than 
trying to send each other to the bottom on a mere question of 
dollars and cents." 

The Snap Dragon was captured in the fall of 1814 by a British 
warship disguised as a merchantman. At the time of her capture 



202 NORTH CAROLINA 

Captain Burns was not in command, being detained at home by an 
attack of rheumatism. Lieutenant De Cokely, second in com- 
mand under Burns, had charge of the ship when it was taken. 

After the close of the war, Captain Burns began anew his 
seafaring Hfe as a jnerchantman, and was often a member of the 
State legislature of North Carolina from Carteret County. He 
was in the House in 1821, 1822, 1824, 1825, 1826 and 1827. In 
1828, 1829, 1831, 1833 and 1834 he was State senator. In the 
Senate, on January 3, 1835 (this date being a continuation of 
the session of 1834), his vote in favor of calling a constitutional 
convention decided that question in the affirmative, and the con- 
vention of 183 s was the result. Eastern North Carolina, from 
whence Burns came, was much opposed to this convention, and 
Burns was never again elected to office. But his disinterested 
action so pleased the people of the west that they named the 
mountain town of Burnsville, in Yancey County, after him. 

Captain Burns was thrice married : first to Miss Grant, daughter 
of Reuben Grant; secondly, in 1814, to Jane Hall; thirdly, in 1842, 
to Jane Smith. His only child was a son by his first wife, Owen 
Burns, born in 1810, who entered the United States Navy as a 
midshipman on December i, 1824; was commissioned lieutenant 
on April 8, 1834, and resigned from the service on June 30, 1840. 

The death of Captain Otway Burns, of the Snap Dragon, 
occurred on October 25, 1848, and he was buried at the town of 
Beaufort, in Carteret County, North Carolina, where a monu- 
ment was unveiled on July 27, 1901, erected by his grandsons, 
children of the above-mentioned Lieutenant Owen Burns, of the 
United States Navy. 

Marshall De Lancey Hayzvood. 




GEORGE BURRINGTON 




[EORGE BURRINGTON, who was twice gov- 
ernor of the province of North Carolina, 
received his first appointment from the Lords 
Proprietors and his second commission direct 
from the King after the Crown had resumed 
control of the colony. 
Burrington's family lived in the county of Devon — that great 
nursery of American navigators and explorers, which has been 
the home of Raleigh, Drake, Hawkins, Grenville and Gilbert. The 
family of Burrington rose in royal favor from the fact that one 
of its members was the first person of the rank of gentleman who 
joined William of Orange when that prince set foot in England 
in 1688. George Burrington received his appointment as governor 
in 1723, but it was not until early in 1724 that he reached North 
Carolina; and on January 15, 1724, he took the oath of office at 
Edenton. When Burrington became governor, the two principal 
factions of the colony were those who adhered to the interests 
of the Lords Proprietors and those more concerned in the local 
interests of the colony and its people. Chief Justice Christopher 
Gale, who was one of the deputies of the Lords Proprietors, was 
leader of the first-mentioned faction, while John Baptista Ashe, 
Edward Moseley, Maurice Moore and others were champions 
of the popular party. Burrington, according to his own statement, 
had known and been on friendly terms with members of the Ashe 



204 NORTH CAROLINA 

family in England, and it was probably owing to this circum- 
stance that during his first administration he sided with the 
popular party, of which Ashe was one of the leaders, and it may 
be mentioned that he could never side with any party without 
giving vent to the most violent outbursts of invective or personal 
violence to its opponents. This disposition on the governor's 
part soon drew him into a violent altercation with Chief Justice 
Gale. He threatened to put the chief justice in irons, slit his 
nose, crop his ears and blow up his house with gunpowder. Gale 
soon went to England to prefer charges against the governor 
for these actions. While all of Burrington's violence was bad 
enough, probably the Lords Proprietors were more influenced 
against him by the charge that he contemplated inaugurating a 
revolution such as had recently occurred in South Carolina, and 
thereby intended to change North Carolina from a proprietary to 
a crown colony. It \yas not long before Burrington was removed 
from his office and succeeded by Sir Richard Everard, Baronet, 
who was sworn in by the Council at Edenton of the 17th of 
July, 1725. After this, the Assembly, which was dominated by 
Ashe, Moseley and their friends, passed resolutions endorsing 
Burrington's administration and denouncing those who had 
caused his removal. Burrington, it would seem, had as little 
respect for governors as for chief justices, for he went to the 
house of Sir Richard Everard and loudly called for satisfaction, 
also denouncing that gentleman as a calf's head, an ape and other 
such contemptuous terms. He was indicted for his violence, but 
left Edenton, and the indictments against him were eventually 
ended by nol. pros. 

Burrington remained on his plantation on the lower Cape Fear 
until in 1729 the Crown purchased Carolina, when he went to 
England, and probably through the influence of the Duke of New- 
castle, secretary of state, who had always been friendly to him, 
he secured a reappointment to his old post, and he was sworn in 
as governor at Edenton on the 25th of February, 1731. The 
arrival of Burrington seems to have caused general rejoicing in 
North Carolina, and both the grand jury for the whole province 



GEORGE BURRINGTON 205 

and the Assembly drew up addresses thanking the King for such 
a mark of favor as the appointment of one so highly esteemed by 
the colonists. But Burrington's orders threw him in antagonism 
with the people, and no sooner had the Assembly met than the 
governor and members were again at odds, and the leaders in the 
Assembly were the very ones who had so strenuously upheld 
Burrington's first administration. 

Notwithstanding Burrington's turbulent disposition, he was a 
man of wonderful capacity for work, and would go in person to 
remote settlements to inspect bridges, roads, etc. Many new roads 
were also cut by his order. On several occasions he narrowly 
escaped death by starvation, and at other times came near being 
drowned. After an extended period of turmoil, during which he 
imprisoned both Ashe and Moseley, and in which the Assembly 
passed no act desired by him, he was displaced; but the conflict 
between the Crown and the people then begun continued in one 
form or another until the colonies became independent. His suc- 
cessor, Gabriel Johnston, was commissioned in the spring of 1733, 
but it was not until the 2d of November, •1734, that he reached 
Brunswick and took the oath of office. 

After Burrington's return to London, he became the author of 
several books, among which were "Seasonable Considerations on 
the Expediency of a War with France" (1743), and "An Answer 
to Dr. William Brakenridge's Letter Concerning the Number of 
Inhabitants within the London Bills of Mortality" (1757). In 
1759, many years after his return to England, Burrington was 
robbed and murdered in London. His lifeless remains were found 
in the canal in St. James Park on the 22d of February, in the 
year last named. About five miles below the town of Brunswick, 
in the Cape Fear section, is a little stream called Governor's Creek, 
after Governor Burrington. Burrington's estate at Rocky Point, 
known as Stag Park, and also large tracts called the Hawfields, 
in what later became Orange County, were for many years owned 
by the well-known Strudwick family of North Carolina, to whom 
he had mortgaged them. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





DAVID CALDWELL 

fUT out of the life of colonial North Carolina 
the Presbyterian element, and the forces that 
made for political and religious independence 
between 1740 and 1775 are weakened almost to 
helplessness ; eliminate the same element, and 
the educational forces of the colony would have 
been wounded beyond hope of immediate recovery. From the time 
of their first coming, 1740, till the Revolution, no other body of 
colonists probably played as large a part in the forces that were 
making for political, religious and intellectual liberty as did the 
Scotch-Irish Presbyterians of the middle and piedmont sections 
of the colony. Among individuals, none did a nobler or more 
enduring work toward the greatness of the State than the Rev. 
David Caldwell, D.D., preacher, teacher and physician, counsellor 
and guide for his friends and neighbors, servant of the people in 
many ways. State builder and protagonist of learning in the 
wilderness of North Carolina. 

David Caldwell, the oldest of the four sons of Andrew and 
Martha Caldwell, was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, 
March 22, 1725. His parents were respectable farmers; one of 
his brothers removed to North Carolina, served in the American 
army, died in 1781 of camp fever, and left a family, who soon 
after migrated to Tennessee. We know little of the youth of 
David Caldwell, save that as a boy he was apprenticed to a house 



DAVID CALDWELL 207 

carpenter, that he served his apprenticeship in that business till he 
was twenty-one, and then worked four years for himself at the 
same trade. It seems that when about twenty-five years old he 
professed religion, and conceived a desire to enter the Presbyterian 
ministry, and that this was the spur which brought him to seek a 
classical education. He agreed with his brothers that he would 
relinquish all claims on the paternal estate for enough money in 
hand to take him through college; it is thought he taught a year 
before going to the College of New Jersey, from which he was 
graduated in 1761. He was then thirty-six years old, and was 
just entering on a man's career, although he had been for fifteen 
years entered on man's estate. After graduation he taught for a 
year ; was tutor in the College of New Jersey, studying theology in 
the meantime, and was licensed by the Presbytery of New Bruns- 
wick in 1763. He served as supply in various places, and on 
May 16, 1765, was appointed "to labor at least one whole year 
as a missionary in North Carolina." 

At the same time as this appointment came a call for him from 
Bufifalo and Alamance settlements in North Carolina. He was 
ordained in July, 1765, and dismissed to join Hanover Presbytery, 
Virginia, the one nearest the scene of his North Carolina mission. 
Thus at forty years of age David Caldwell became one of the 
earliest Presbyterian missionaries in North Carolina, and begun 
his work among a people who had preceded him into North Caro- 
lina by only a few years, and who had also come, to a large extent, 
from his own section of Pennsylvania. 

It is believed that Caldwell first visited North Carolina in 1764, 
and that he came out to settle in 1765, although there is no record 
of his presence here before 1766. He was present at a meeting 
of Hanover Presbytery in June, 1766; joined that Presbytery 
October 11, 1767, and on March 5, 1768, was installed at Buffalo 
as pastor of the Buffalo and Alamance congregations in Guilford 
County. This pastoral relation continued until about 1820. He 
was then succeeded as pastor by his biographer. Rev. Eli Washing- 
ton Caruthers, who remained in the pastorate till 1861. These 
two consecrated men served these churches continuously for 



2o8 NORTH CAROLINA 

ninety-six years, a length of pastoral service perhaps not equalled 
elsewhere in the history of the State. 

In 1766 Dr. Caldwell married Rachel Craighead, daughter of 
Rev. Alexander Craighead of Mecklenburg County, North Caro- 
lina, another Scotch-Irish leader of prominence, who did high 
service for the State. To this union were born eight sons and a 
daughter, who attained maturity, and all of whom became useful 
citizens; three of the sons became ministers of the gospel and 
one became a physician. 

Immediately after his settlement in North Carolina, Dr. Caldwell 
began to adapt himself to the wants and needs of the community 
in which he lived. He began about 1767 a classical school, which 
was continued, with two or three interruptions, well into the nine- 
teenth century, until he was forced to discontinue his educational 
labors by the infirmities of age. This school was not only one of 
the most efficient and most noted in the State, but was one of the 
best that the State has ever had. It usually had about fifty boys 
in attendance, and drew its patronage from many sections of the 
commonwealth and from all the other States south of the Potomac. 
It prepared for life or for the higher institutions, like the Uni- 
versity of North CaroHna and the College of New Jersey, and in- 
cluded among its pupils Judge Archibald D. Murphey, Judge 
McCoy, Governor John M. Morehead, Hon. Lewis Williams and 
others. It is said that Caldwell was instrumental in bringing more 
men into the learned professions than any other man of his day 
in the Southern States. His log cabin schoolhouse "served North 
Carolina for many years as an academy, a college and a theological 
seminary." Many of his pupils became eminent as statesmen, 
lawyers, judges, physicians and ministers ; some were congress- 
men, and five became governors of States. Seven were licensed 
by Orange Presbytery in one day ; there were not more than three 
or four members of that Presbytery who had not been his pupils, 
while nearly all of the young men who came into the Presbyterian 
ministry in North Carolina and in the States to the south and 
west of it for many years had been trained in his school. 

Because of the frontier character of the country in which he 



DAVID CALDWELL 209 

lived, Dr. Caldwell found it desirable also to study medicine. He 
became a practicing physician, not in the ordinary sense, but in a 
more restricted one, serving a clientele located over a space of 
country some twenty miles in diameter, and who had no other 
medical service than such as he could render in the name of 
humanity. It is probable that with his learning and general train- 
ing Caldwell was not far behind, as a medical practitioner, the 
leading physicians of the province. He took pride and pleasure, 
too, in the cultivation of his farm with his own hands. He got 
recreation and rest not from a cessation, but from a change of 
labor, for his life, especially during his more mature years, was 
pre-eminently a life of labor rather than a life of study. 

During the earlier years of his ministry Caldwell came into 
conflict with the spirit of the Established Church, which had a 
legal existence in North Carolina, but while the laws against 
dissenters were in form unfair and tolerably severe, they were 
not enforced, and practically Presbyterian and other dissenters 
suffered little inconvenience from the Established Church other 
than theoretical disabilities. Caldwell, like other Presbyterians, 
labored assiduously to have these disabilities removed, and by the 
coming of the Revolution had met with a large degree of success. 
In 1776 he suggested to the Presbytery of Orange the propriety 
of asking the Provincial Congress then in session in Halifax for 
relief from the restrictions and oppressions to which all dissenters 
were still theoretically subjected in North Carolina. But the estab- 
lishment, with all it implied, fell in North Carolina with the fall 
of British power. Caldwell was a member of the Provincial Con- 
gress which met in Halifax in November and December, 1776, 
to frame a constitution for the State. It is said that he was 
responsible for the thirty-second clause of that constitution, which 
denied liberty of conscience to Roman Catholics, but this assertion 
has never been proven. 

The Regulation movement is such an important chapter in the 
history of North Carolina and of the section in which Dr. Caldwell 
labored that it cannot be ignored in any sketch of his career, 
however brief that sketch may be. His congregations were in 



2IO NORTH CAROLINA 

the heart of the disaffected district, a large part of his male mem- 
bers took an active part in the movement, and the Alamance 
battle was fought not far from his home. The "War of the Regu- 
lation" was one of a series of efforts made by the people of North 
Carolina at various times to secure a redress of grievances. It 
began as early as 1759 with the Enfield riots, which were directed 
against the land officers of Earl Granville. A little later extor- 
tions began to grow up among the county officers in various 
sections of the province. Because of the lavish expenditures of 
Tryon's government, provincial taxes were high, and being levied 
on the poll, bore unduly on the poor and thinly settled com- 
munities of the middle section. In 1765 discontent became acute, 
and was manifest as far east as Pasquotank. It broke out into 
violence in the present counties of Granville, Orange, Alamance, 
Guilford, Rockingham, Surry, Chatham, Randolph, Rowan, 
Davidson, Anson, Cabarrus, Mecklenburg and Iredell. The dis- 
contented element called themselves "Regulators." Under the 
leadership of Husband, Howell, Hunter and others, they published 
numerous addresses on the condition of affairs. The organization 
gained headway. Its purpose was to "regulate" the grievances of 
which they complained; these were excessive taxes, dishonest 
sheriffs and extortionate fees. Their agreement, or articles of 
association, show that their purpose was peaceful in character, 
and that they were willing to pay legal taxes and legal fees. They 
petitioned the government often for redress. This was often 
promised, but never granted. This failure to receive the redress 
asked no doubt irritated many, and led them to commit many 
indefensible acts of license and violence. A rupture was narrowly 
averted in 1768. In 1770 the legislature passed an act against 
tumults and riotous assemblies. This law anticipated some of the 
essential features of the "five intolerable acts" of the British 
Parliament of 1774. It was so brutal and infamous, so tyrannical 
and subversive of all liberty of the subject, that it was disallowed 
even by the English Government as "irreconcilable with the prin- 
ciples of the Constitution, full of danger in its operation and unfit 
for any part of the British Empire." This act, more commonly 



DAVID CALDWELL 211 

known as the "Johnston Act," from its author, was aimed at and 
immediately put into execution against the Regulators. It goaded 
them to further resistance. Tryon collected an army from the 
eastern counties, although in many sections the spirit of resistance 
was almost as pronounced as in the Regulation country. On 
May 16, 1771, with his army of iioo men, organized, trained and 
armed, Tryon came up with some 2000 Regulators at Alamance 
Creek, now in Alamance County. The Regulators were un- 
organized, without officers, untrained and in part unarmed. There 
was much parleying, the Regulators even to the last petitioning 
for redress. Dr. Caldwell was present, and acted as a sort of 
peace commissioner from the Regulators to the governor. He 
sought to prevent a battle, and failed. Tryon forced the battle, 
defeated the Regulators, took some prisoners, and, with more 
than Jeffreys' bloodthirstiness, hanged six out of the twelve con- 
demned. It does not appear that Dr. Caldwell suffered further 
personal inconvenience from the Regulation, although many of 
his parishioners suffered both in their persons and estates. It is 
usually said that the Regulators were Tories in the Revolution ; 
certain it is tha^rthey were not enthusiastic supporters of the Whig 
principles of 1776, for they, unlike Person and Caldwell, were 
unable to see that the principles of the Regulation and of the 
Revolution were the same. Caldwell's biographer, Caruthers, 
states that while a large part of his congregation took part in 
the Regulation, none of them were Tories in the Revolution. This 
was no doubt due to the personal influence of Caldwell, for as the 
difficulties between England and America became more serious, 
he often preached on the signs of the times ; and he denounced the 
corruptions and oppressions of the home government, and ex- 
horted his hearers to value their liberties. He continued his regu- 
lar work till about the summer of 1780, however, but from that 
time till the return of peace confusion reigned in Central North 
Carolina. Caldwell's house became a center of refuge for perse- 
cuted Whigs from other sections ; it was plundered by Tories, and 
he was forced to lie in the woods for safety, and was once captured 
by a Tory party. Cornwallis, knowing his character, offered 



212 NORTH CAROLINA 

£200 for his arrest, and during the Guilford campaign camped 
on his land and destroyed his property. In mere wantonness, 
his library, considerable for the time and country, together with 
all his private papers, was also destroyed. The battle of Guil- 
ford Court-house occurred within a few miles of his home, and, 
as a medical man, Caldwell assisted in caring for the sick and 
wounded of both armies. When the war was over he returned 
to his school and his religious duties. In 1788 he was a member 
of the Hillsboro convention, which declined to ratify the Federal 
Constitution. He desired a religious test to be inserted into that 
instrument, and voted against its adoption. This seems to have 
been his last public service. 

Dr. Caldwell was a trustee of Liberty Hall Academy in Char- 
lotte in 1777. When the University was being organized, he was 
offered the presidency, being beyond doubt the leading educator 
in the State. He saw fit to decline this offer, but continued to 
teach till old age compelled retirement. His work in the ministry 
continued till about 1820. He died August 25, 1824, being then in 
his one hundredth year, and was buried at Buffalo Church, which 
he had served for nearly sixty years. The value of such a man to 
his day and generation is beyond human power to estimate. 

This sketch of Dr. Caldwell is based mainly on his Life, pub- 
lished by Rev. Eli W. Caruthers (Greensboro, 1842). This Life 
contains one of the earliest accounts of the Regulation movement, 
and naturally presents a favorable view. North Carolina students 
are much divided as to the significance of the outbreak. Some, 
including Colonel W. L. Saunders, in his prefatory notes to the 
"Colonial Records," hold that these men anticipated the spirit 
of 1776, while others, including Colonel A. M. Waddell, in his 
"A Colonial Officer," M. De L. Haywood, in his "Governor 
William Tryon," and Professor J. S. Bassett, in the Report of 
the American Historical Association for 1894, hold that it was 
a riotous outbreak, unconnected with later events, and support 
the contentions of Tryon and the Government party. 

Stephen B. Weeks. 







c?t y'^&irri^e/ 





JOSEPH PEARSON CALDWELL 

JURING every period there have been strong, 
capable and influential men, leaders of thought, 
at the head of the press in North Carolina, and 
among them all but few have stood higher than 
Joseph Pearson Caldwell, editor of the Char- 
lotte Observer. Mr. Caldwell is a scion of that 
Scotch-Irish family of Caldwells resident in the Piedmont section 
from its early settlement, which has made its impress on the lives 
of the people of that region. Among its sons were Judge David F. 
Caldwell, whose virtues and learning rendered him an ornament 
to the bench, and Joseph P. Caldwell, the father of the subject of 
this sketch, a lawyer of ability, whose social excellence gained for 
him wide influence, and who represented his district in Congress 
in 1849 and 1851, and whose lamented death cut short a public 
service that promised great usefulness as well as personal 
distinction. 

Through the female lines, Mr. Caldwell, whose mother was 
Miss Amanda McCullough, descends from Thomas Polk, the 
distinguished patriot of Mecklenburg, and from Captain William 
Sharpe, who came to Rowan about 1764, and being a lawyer and 
taking an active stand for the liberties of the people, exercised a 
strong influence in that section. The journal of the Committee 
of Safety of Rowan County attests the activity of Captain Sharpe, 
as well as his sagacity and influence. He was one of the ruling 



214 NORTH CAROLINA 

spirits of that region ; was a member of the Provincial Congresses 
in 1776; was in the expedition against the Cherokees in 1776, as 
an aide to General Rutherford; and the next year he was one 
of the commissioners to make a treaty of peace with the 
Indians. 

In 1779 he was selected to be one of the delegates to represent 
the State in the Continental Congress, and he continued at heavy 
expense on that patriotic duty until the war closed in 1782. 

Captain Sharpe married a daughter of David Reese, a patriot 
of Mecklenburg County, and a member of its Committee of Safety, 
who participated in all the bold and resolute actions that so dis- 
tinguished the people of that county; and their daughter Ruth 
became the wife of Andrew Caldwell of Iredell County, from 
whom the subject of this sketch is descended. 

Sprung from an ancestry whose characteristics were so replete 
with energy, intelligence and manhood, and who had by their 
patriotism and public service wielded a commanding influence, 
Mr. Caldwell naturally inherited high purposes in life. Born on 
the 1 6th day of June, 1853, 1^^ was still a boy when the State 
emerged from the trials and tribulations that afflicted her people; 
and having been taught somewhat at home, at the age of fifteen 
he entered the printing office of the Statesville American, with the 
hope of perfecting his education in such work ; and later he became 
the local editor of the Statesville Intelligencer. When about 
nineteen years of age he succeeded in obtaining employment on 
the staff of the Charlotte Observer, and entering in this larger 
field, he began that career which he has since so successfully 
followed. After four years of practice in that position, which 
proved very beneficial in making him familiar with all the phases 
of journalism, he connected himself with the Daily News at 
Raleigh, and passed a year at the State capital, with the profitable 
results of extending his acquaintance not only with the public 
men of the State, but with public matters. His proficiency as a 
writer had now become recognized by the press and the public, 
and he secured a place as an assistant to the editor of the Charlotte 
Observer, and continued in that editorial work until 1880, when 



JOSEPH PEARSON CALDWELL 215 

he was able to purchase the Statesville Landmark, and he returned 
to his boyhood home at Statesville admirably equipped for his 
profession. It was not long before his capacity as an editor 
became evident. Under his management the Landmark rapidly 
rose in public estimation; the typography was excellent and the 
presswork of the best; so that the Landmark became a pattern 
for the other papers of the State to follow. Its selections showed 
care and intelligence; its editorials, while solid and clear, were 
very bright and admirable in thought as well as forcible in lan- 
guage. It was conducted on a high plane, free from the evils 
of misguided efforts to follow the popular lead or pander to local 
prejudices. Indeed, the native texture of Mr. Caldwell's inherited 
characteristics was here displayed to great advantage. In warp 
and woof he was gifted with manly attributes, and the more he 
was brought under the test of public scrutiny, the more was his 
substantial work recognized by an appreciative clientage. The 
Landmark soon became a valuable property financially, while it 
exerted a strong influence all through the Piedmont country. 
Among his editorial brethren Mr. Caldwell ranked deservedly 
high. The North Carolina Press Association received him as a 
member with great satisfaction, and in token of their admiration 
he was at once chosen president of the body. In 1885 he was 
appointed a director of the State Hospital at Morganton, and 
became president of the board directing the work of that great 
institution; and in its construction, and later in its management, 
he was ever a leading spirit. Recognizing his personal worth, 
and anxious to do him honor, in 1886 the people of Statesville 
desired him to be their mayor, and for four years he continued 
to be the chief magistrate of his community. In 1890 an oppor- 
tunity offered for him to become interested in the Charlotte 
Observer, and he moved to Charlotte and edited that paper, while 
continuing to own a half interest in the Landmark. The intelli- 
gence and clearness of views, which had made the Landmark the 
most influential weekly paper now being transferred to the 
Observer, soon brought that journal up to the front rank in North 
Carolina journalism. Changes and alterations followed as fast as 



2i6 NORTH CAROLINA 

circumstances permitted until at length the Observer attained the 
unique distinction of being not only the best edited, but the best 
printed and the most progressive newspaper in the State, a dis- 
tinction which for a long period it enjoyed without a rival. The 
growth of the manufacturing interests in the vicinity of Charlotte 
gave an enlarged field to the Observer. Unlike the other papers 
of the State, its patrons were in large part interested in manu- 
facturing rather than in agricultural pursuits, and the Observer 
has sympathized with the new and progressive ideas of those 
engaged in manufactures, though losing none of its interest in its 
agricultural clientele. When, therefore, the agricultural South 
was clamoring for the silver side of the money issue, Mr. Caldwell, 
adhering to what he regarded the true Democratic principle, boldly 
stood forward as a champion of Mr. Cleveland's views, which 
found large acceptance among the manufacturers of the State. 
And Mr. Caldwell differed so strongly with Mr. Bryan, the 
nominee of the Democratic Party for the Presidency, that he 
declined to support him. 

Mr. Caldwell has not sought political preferment, the honor of 
being mayor of his community at Statesville, and the position of 
director of the Morganton Hospital, like that of president of the 
Press Association and president of the Commercial Club at Char- 
lotte, being mere public testimonials of the esteem in which he has 
ever been held. He has felt that the high calling of journalism is 
sufficient to fill a reasonable measure of ambition, and he is con- 
tent with the appreciation his admirable work in his journalistic 
career has won for him. Under his control the Observer has long 
been a powerful instrument to advance a good cause or to defeat 
a bad one, and he realizes the great power that his newspaper 
wields. Seeking no display, he has systematically pursued his 
daily work and held the even tenor of his way through the diffi- 
culties that beset journalism, conscious of the rectitude of his 
purposes and secure in the high esteem of the best men in his 
section. From a small paper on an insecure basis, he has made 
the Observer a great journal — strong, wealthy and influential. It 
is a monument of his success, a success that has been attained 



JOSEPH PEARSON CALDWELL 



217 



through indomitable industry and by persistently adhering to high 
ideals and disregarding vagaries and popular notions. 

On the 14th of June, 1877, Mr. Caldwell was united in marriage 
to Miss Margaret Lowrie Spratt, whom, however, he had the 
misfortune to lose some ten years ago, and he has since remained 
a widower. He has three living children. 

In speaking of his life, Mr. Caldwell says that home influence 
was strong in its effect on his career, and he was greatly aided 
by association with older and intellectual and cultivated men ; and 
he suggests as being beneficial to young men a sturdy adherence 
to principle under all circumstances ; good reading, good associa- 
tions and correct living. 

S. A. Ashe. 





DAVID YOUNG COOPER 




'BOUT the middle of the eighteenth century a 
tide of emigration from Virginia was turned 
toward Granville County, in North Carolina. 
Near Grassy Creek, in the northern part of the 
county, some sixteen miles from the present 
county seat, the Baptists and Presbyterians 
located churches in close proximity, each called Grassy Creek. 
Around these were formed settlements of thrifty, intelligent. God- 
fearing tillers of the soil, who have maintained a good report for 
a century and a half. Here, near the close of the century, came 
James Cooper from Glasgow, Scotland, and gladly found in the 
near neighborhood the Venables, Hamiltons, Steeds and others, 
men of tartan and bag-pipe ancestry, followers of Calvin and 
Knox. And here his son Alexander was born and spent his days. 
He was the father of our subject. An elder in Little Grassy 
Creek Presbyterian Church, a justice of the peace, a successful 
farmer and slave-owner, honest and just, he was respected by his 
neighbors and noted for doing well whatever he undertook. The 
wife of Alexander Cooper was Harriet J. Young, daughter of 
David J. Young, who came to Granville County from Virginia. 
This family was prominent and influential. Many of its members 
have won deserved recognition outside of their social circles. 
Among such may be named William Hamilton Young, lawyer 
and accomplished scholar; Colonel John D. Young, a gallant 



DAVID YOUNG COOPER 219 

soldier in the Confederate army ; Dr. Wesley Young, the Oxford 
physician ; Colonel I. J. Young, a prominent politician during the 
period following the Civil War ; and James R. Young, insurance 
commissioner of North Carolina, and author of the North Caro- 
lina Insurance Law. 

In this community, and of such stock, David Young Cooper was 
born April 21, 1847. During his childhood he attended the 
country schools near his home, and when not so engaged was 
required with his brothers to cultivate parcels of land allotted to 
them, that they might learn industry and respect for labor. 
On Sundays he was required to attend church. These early 
habits of industry and church attendance have continued 
and greatly contributed to his usefulness and success. From 
1858 to 1863 he attended Horner School at Oxford, North 
Carolina, after which he served a year in the Confederate 
army. 

In 1867, when twenty years of age, Mr. Cooper began farming 
on his own account at his old home; and five years later moved 
to Henderson and entered upon that course of commercial enter- 
prise which has brought him both wealth and reputation, and 
where during the past twenty years he has influenced the life of 
the community in a measure not attained by any other. In co- 
operation with his uncle, the late J. Crawford Cooper of Oxford, 
he inaugurated the tobacco warehouse business, since known as 
Cooper's warehouse. He understood men, and possessed in un- 
usual measure the elements of success. A cordial and hearty 
friendliness, untiring energy, industry that kept him early and late 
about his business, close attention to details, large comprehension, 
sound judgment, an indomitable will and a liberal and enterprising 
spirit characterized his life and brought him phenomenal success. 
He takes a natural pride in the fact that, although he began busi- 
ness with small means, he has kept his affairs so well in hand that 
he has never given a note. 

Cooper's warehouse has been twice driven into larger quarters. 
Mr. Cooper built the present large brick warehouse, well equipped 
for every demand of the trade, in 1886. At that time he bought 



220 NORTH CAROLINA 

out the interest of his uncle in the business, and continued it in his 
own name until 1902. 

From 1875 to 1895, Mr. Cooper was probably the largest seller 
of fine tobacco in the world. 

By his marriage on February 24, 1876, with Leah Hilliard 
Perry, daughter of Dr. Sydney Perry of Franklin County, Mr. 
Cooper added to his connection a group of the most prominent 
families in Franklin, Nash and Warren counties, embracing such 
well-known names as Alston, Boddie, Carr, Crudup, Hilliard and 
Williams. The Perrys were most likely settled in old Granville 
before the erection of Bute County. It is certain that they were 
well known in Bute during the Revolutionary period, and were 
long distinguished for wealth, refinement, culture and an elegant 
but simple old-time hospitality. Mrs. Cooper brought to her new 
relation the traditional characteristics of her family, and, we may 
add, of her county, and quickly created one of the most delight- 
ful homes in Henderson. Her death in 1897 bereaved the 
whole community, and the blessings of the poor followed her to 
the grave. Four sons and a daughter survive this marriage. 

Soon after entering business in Henderson, Mr. Cooper recog- 
nized the need of a new county, of which Henderson should be 
the capital, and he entered heartily into plans to secure its creation. 
After several failures, an act was finally obtained from the Gen- 
eral Assembly establishing Vance County from portions of the 
old counties of Franklin, Granville and Warren, subject to the 
approval of the qualified voters of the new county. The campaign 
which ensued was one of great warmth, even bitterness. The 
traditions of these old counties were treasured as a part of the 
life history of many old families, which they were loath to lose. 
Their attachments and associations centered around Louisburg, 
Oxford and Warrenton, and they fought to preserve them. The 
younger men of vigor and industry, who saw better opportunities 
for youth and enterprise in a new county, warmly supported the 
movement. It was before the day of the constitutional amend- 
ment, and the leaning of the colored vote, then in the majority, 
added to the complications of the situation. Among the leaders 



DAVID YOUNG COOPER 221 

of the movement were Mr. Cooper, Colonel I. J. Young, Dr. W. T. 
Cheatham, Harrison Lassiter, James H. Lassiter, Colonel Harvie 
Harris and James R. Young. The vote resulted in favor of the 
new county, and Henderson entered upon a course of great 
prosperity. 

With the rapid increase of his own business and wealth, Mr. 
Cooper developed fine capacity for large enterprises, which during 
the past 'few years has led to many demands for his services, the 
most important of which have been in connection with financial 
and industrial enterprises at his own home. 

The Henderson Storage Warehouse was the first of these enter- 
prises. Its significance was not at first apparent to casual observ- 
ers. Indeed, members of the company scarcely realized its full 
import. For years it had been customary to store tobacco in 
Richmond and Petersburg, obtain advances on warehouse certifi- 
cates in those cities, and sell upon the samples certified by their 
warehouse inspectors. The storage company largely transferred 
this business to Henderson. It erected a large warehouse for 
storage, and appointed Wyndham E. Gary, a well-known tobacco 
expert, as inspector. His certificates and samples were accepted 
without question for advances and sales at home and elsewhere. 
A double purpose was accomplished — a new and profitable line 
of business was inaugurated, and the financial interests of the 
community were co-ordinated for the first time, opening the way 
for co-operation in larger undertakings. The Citizens' Bank fol- 
lowed in January, 1889. Mr. J. B. Owen, a young gentleman of 
high character and large fortune, came to Henderson from Meck- 
lenburg County, Virginia, and proposed the organization of a bank 
with a capital of $45,000. The only bank previous to that time 
was the uncapitalized private Bank of Henderson. This was soon 
absorbed by the Citizens' Bank, which, until the recent opening 
of the First National Bank, furnished the entire banking facilities 
of the community. It has been an eminently successful institution, 
and has now a capital and surplus of $125,000, with $450,000 
deposits, $385,000 loans and discounts, and $587,000 of total re- 
sources. Mr. Cooper has been a director from its organization. 



222 NORTH CAROLINA 

But Mr. Cooper's greatest work outside of his tobacco business 
has been in the creation of the cotton manufacturing interests of 
Henderson. The Henderson Cotton Mill was organized in 1895, 
with a capital of $90,000, which was increased- to $125,000 before 
operations were begun, and subsequently to $240,000. The mill 
has been enlarged from time to time from its earnings. It con- 
sumed one thousand bales of cotton the first year of its operation, 
and its capacity has now increased to ten thousand bales. The 
stock is largely held in Henderson, and has steadily realized an 
annual dividend of 8 per cent. Upon the increase in stock, there 
were offers for more than twice the amount of the issue in a very 
short time. Mr. Cooper has been president of the company from 
the beginning. 

The Harriet Cotton Mill, named in honor of Mr. Cooper's 
mother, was organized in 1898, with a capital of $240,000, which 
was increased to $300,000 in 1900. This mill has also been greatly 
enlarged from its earnings, while steadily paying its annual divi- 
dends, and consumes about 10,000 bales of cotton annually. It 
also largely represents local capital, and Mr. Cooper has been its 
only president. 

He has conducted the operations of these mills with such signal 
ability that he has never had occasion to leave Henderson to 
secure a dollar for the use of either enterprise. The two plants 
are worth nearly or quite a million dollars now, and do an annual 
business of some million and a half dollars. Mr. Cooper claims 
these mills to be the largest producers and sellers of hosiery yarns 
in the South. One important result of their location has been to 
greatly enhance the position of Henderson as a cotton market. 

Mr. Cooper would resent any claim that he alone has accom- 
plished these things. It is doubtful if there are combined in any 
enterprise in the State an abler or more efficient body of men than 
are associated in these Henderson ventures. They have accorded 
Mr. Cooper a leading position, and he has justified their confidence. 

It is not unfitting in this connection to mention Mr. Cooper's 
relations with those in his employ. He takes a deep personal 
interest in their welfare. This is particularly noticeable in respect 



DAVID YOUNG COOPER 223 

to young men who prove themselves capable and deserving. In 
nearly every instance when he has advanced them as far as he 
can in his own business, he goes outside and secures them pro- 
motion elsewhere commensurate with their deserts. His interest 
in the operatives of his mills is almost paternal. He has secured 
the location of branches of the Henderson graded school near each 
mill. He has been the largest contributor to their churches and 
Sunday-schools. The fact that he is an Episcopalian and they 
almost entirely Baptists and Methodists seems forgotten on both 
sides. He is as much interested in getting reports of the Sunday- 
school work as members of their own denominations. On a recent 
occasion, when a prominent minister of a leading denomination 
discredited the religious and moral influence thrown around mill 
settlements, Mr. Cooper drew from his pocket a report of the 
Sunday-school of the South Henderson Baptist Church (Harriet 
Mills), and challenged comparison with any school of that min- 
ister's denomination in the State. Naturally, he is held in high 
esteem by his employees. 

While exerting his best efforts for the development of home 
interests, Mr. Cooper has not been insensible to the demands and 
opportunities outside. In 1892 he was a delegate from North 
Carolina to the Nicaragua Canal Convention at New Orleans. 
Under the Hoffman administration, he was a director in the 
Durham and Northern Railway Company, a director in the Sea- 
board Air Line Railway Company, and a member of the Finance 
Committee of the latter. He has been for some years a director 
of the Commercial and Farmers' Bank, Raleigh, North Carolina, 
and is interested in the Wachovia Loan and Trust Company, and 
many other financial and industrial enterprises both in and out of 
the State. 

In 1902, upon the coming of age of his two elder sons, Sydney 
P. and Alexander, he partly relieved himself of the burdens of his 
warehouse business by converting it into a corporation and shift- 
ing much of the labor upon their younger shoulders. 

Aside from the large enterprises that have been noted, Mr. 
Cooper is concerned in nearly all the public enterprises of Hender- 



224 NORTH CAROLINA 

son. He may justly be called the founder of the Henderson 
graded schools. In 1899 he joined with a few other gentlemen of 
the town in organizing the central school without legislative 
charter or provision of law for its support. They undertook its 
support, the people of the community making such contributions 
as they pleased. Professor J. T. Alderman, formerly of this State, 
but then connected with the public schools of Columbus, Georgia, 
was secured as superintendent, and the movement was a success 
from the beginning. In 1901 the General Assembly passed an 
act establishing the school upon a legal basis and providing for its 
support. Mr. Cooper was one of the original trustees, and upon 
the retirement of Dr. J. D. Huffham, D.D., succeeded him as 
president of the board. The school has outgrown its present 
facilities, and a splendid lot, well located, has been purchased, 
upon which a new building will be erected during the present 
or coming year at a cost of $20,000 or $25,000. He has also 
served the town as a member of its Board of Internal Improve- 
ments, but otherwise he has not sought or held any public office. 

But in common with most representative men of Henderson, it 
is his home that most engages his affections. In 1898 he was 
joined in marriage with Mrs. Florence M. Davis, a daughter of 
Mr. Nicholas H. Chavasse of Henderson, granddaughter of Sir 
Thomas Chavasse, an eminent English surgeon; niece of the 
present Bishop of Liverpool, England, and kinswoman of George 
Eliot, the novelist. It is a most congenial and sympathetic union, 
and their home is a center of social life and hospitality. Both 
are deeply interested in their church, the Episcopal, of which he 
has been a vestryman and treasurer for many years, and concern 
themselves actively in its various enterprises. He was one of the 
moving spirits in acquiring St. Mary's School for the church, and 
has been one of its trustees from the time of its acquisition. 

Negative qualities are wanting in Mr. Cooper. To be positive 
and aggressive is his ideal of a business man. In his personal 
relations he is of a friendly disposition, both approachable and 
accessible. He recognizes an obligation to the community grow- 
ing out of his wealth, and is one of the first men approached for 



DAVID YOUNG COOPER 



2,2- 



aid to any object that appeals to public or private beneficence. He 
is democratic by instinct as well as conviction, because he is inter- 
ested in his fellow-men. His early purpose in life, as stated by 
himself, was "to become a first-class business man, to surpass 
my competitors by doing things better than they can, and to be 
of real service to my community and fellow-men." How far this 
has been accomplished may be judged in a measure from the 
record here given. 

Thomas M. Pittman. 





WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 




lENERAL WILLIAM RUFFIN COX, distin- 
guished alike for his military and civil services, 
is a resident of Edgecombe County. His grand- 
father on his father's side, John Cox, whose 
baptism is recorded in St. Paul's Cathedral at 
London, was early in life an officer of the 
British Navy, but coming to America, he engaged during the 
period of the War of 1812 in the American merchant service, a 
perilous undertaking, as the American coast was closely blockaded 
by British cruisers, which his fleet vessel on one occasion failed 
to elude, and he was captured and held a prisoner. 

He settled in Edenton, North Carolina, where he married Miss 
Cheshire, and left three children, two sons and a daughter. The 
eldest son, Thomas Cox, was born in Chowan County, but re- 
moving to Washington County, became a prominent merchant at 
Plymouth, where he was a member of the firm of Clark, Deve- 
reux & Cox. This firm was engaged in the West India trade, 
owning many vessels and importing and exporting large quantities 
of merchandise, a trade carried on extensively for a great many 
years by the enterprising merchants of Eastern North Carolina, 
but which has now long been discontinued. Mr. Cox was also 
a. member of the firm of Maitland, Cox & Company of Phila- 
delphia, which likewise had large trade connections. 

He represented his county in the State Senate in 1823. In 1825 



WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 227 

he moved his residence to Halifax County, where some years 
before he married Miss Olivia Norfleet, a daughter of Marmaduke 
Norfleet, an extensive planter in that portion of North Carolina. 
Mr. Cox now became chiefly engaged in agricultural pursuits, 
but with a fine appreciation of the advantages which would attend 
the introduction of railroads, then first beginning to be built at 
the North, he became a leading advocate of the construction of 
railroad lines in North Carolina, and otherwise exerted his 
influence for the progressive measures that were agitated at that 
period in the State. 

He did not, however, long survive, but died in 1836, leaving 
four sons and three daughters. After his death his widow, in 
order to be with her eldest daughter, who had married Dr. L. B. 
Powell, removed to Nashville, Tennessee, where her family grew 
up and became prominently connected with various enterprises 
in that progressive State. 

General Cox, the subject of this sketch, was the youngest son 
of their union, being born on March 11, 1832, at his father's home 
in Scotland Neck. Bereft of his father's care at such an early age. 
General Cox owes his early training solely to his mother, a lady of 
rare intellectual gifts and fine culture. She first placed him at the 
Vine Hill Academy, Scotland Neck, and he was prepared for 
college at an academy near Nashville. When fifteen years of 
age he entered Franklin College, where he graduated with dis- 
tinction, and then, proposing to study law, he attended the law 
school of Lebanon College along with other students who have 
since attained high distinction, such as United States Senator 
Bate and Judges McHenry and East of the Supreme Court of 
Tennessee. 

Coming to the bar in 1852, he formed a partnership at Nashville 
with Hon. John G. Ferguson, a lawyer of distinction, which con- 
tinued until 1857, when, having married Miss Penelope B. Battle, 
a daughter of James Battle of Edgecombe County, North Caro- 
lina, and having no longer any close family ties in Tennessee, he 
abandoned his law practice and returned to North Carolina, and, 
locating in Edgecombe County, he entered on the life of a planter. 



228 NORTH CAROLINA 

Two years later he removed to Raleigh, not, however, abandoning 
his interests as a planter. The portentous events of the following 
year aroused his patriotic zeal in behalf of the South, and, in view 
of possible war, he joined others in equipping a light battery; 
and, upon the outbreak of hostilities, he recruited a company of 
infantry, which he expected to command, but Governor Ellis, dis- 
cerning his capabilities, on May 8, 1861, appointed him major 
of the Second North Carolina troops, the colonel being C. C. Tew, 
an accomplished military officer, who had made a tour of Europe 
studying the military methods of the Continent, and who had 
been the efficient principal of the military academy near Hills- 
boro; and with this regiment Major Cox at once entered upon 
active service. For the next six months the regiment was on 
picket duty on the southern bank of the Potomac, and during 
that period it was thoroughly drilled and instructed by its ad- 
mirable commander. At that time Major Cox was put in com- 
mand of a battery of heavy artillery at Pratt's Point, on the 
Potomac River. On June 26, 1862, the Second North Carolina 
was the first regiment to cross Meadow Bridge at Mechanicsville 
under a terrific shelling. The next day, as all of the field officers 
of the First Regiment had fallen, Major Cox was assigned to lead 
that regiment into the battle; and he participated with great 
gallantry and intrepidity in all the desperate fighting, running 
through seven days, that resulted in hurling back McClellan's 
"finest army on the planet," defeated and disorganized and cower- 
ing under protection of the Federal gunboats at Harrison's land- 
ing. At Malvern Hill Major Cox was severely wounded, and, 
being on furlough, did not join his regiment until after the battle 
of South Mountain. Then followed Sharpsburg, where, at the 
end of the "Bloody Lane," stands the enduring monument to the 
fame of the brigade of which the Second Regiment formed a 
part, reciting "that there, after a bloody and desperate encounter 
at thirty paces, Anderson's North Carolina Brigade drove back 
Meagher's New York Brigade with great slaughter," but the 
North Carolinians suffered heavily also. Among others, Colonel 
Tew fell; but for months his fate was unknown, and some time 



WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 229 

elapsed before Lieutenant-Colonel Bynum was promoted to the 
vacancy and- Major Cox became lieutenant-colonel; and after the 
battle of Fredericksburg, Colonel Bynum having resigned, Colonel 
Cox succeeded to the command of the regiment, and bore a dis- 
tinguished part in all the battles in which Stonewall Jackson's 
Corps participated. 

At Chancellorsville, on Friday evening. Colonel Cox moved up 
and drove in Hooker's outposts, the regiment lying that night 
so near to the enemy that all orders were given in whispers ; and 
the next morning Cox's regiment was one of the sixteen North 
Carolina regiments that Jackson led in his memorable march across 
Hooker's front, reaching the rear of Siegel's troops about sunset. 
The men were in line, stooping like athletes, when Ramseur, their 
brigade commander, ordered "forward at once," and Cox, lead- 
ing his regiment, drove the enemy from their works; but his 
troops were subjected to a terrific enfilading artillery fire at only 
200 yards distance, and in fifteen minutes he lost 300 of the 400 
men he had carried in with him. The gallant colonel himself re- 
ceived five wounds, but continued on the field until exhausted. Of 
him the lamented Ramseur said in his report: '"The manly and 
chivalrous Cox of the Second North Carolina, the accomplished 
gentleman, splendid soldier and warm friend, who, though 
wounded five times, remained with his regiment until exhausted. 
In common with the entire command, I regret his temporary 
absence from the field, where he loves to be." The brigade re- 
ceived, through General Lee, a message of praise from the dying 
lips of General Jackson. 

Again at Spottsylvania the brigade won imperishable fame. 
Hancock, at early dawn, under cover of a fog, broke the Con- 
federate line held by General Edward Johnson, and the Second, 
Fourth, Fourteenth and Thirtieth North Carolina regiments with 
great vigor drove the enemy back out of the Bloody Angle 
through every line, regaining all of the lost ground ; and Lee, filled 
with admiration and gratification, bade General Ramseur to 
assemble the officers of those regiments, among whom was Colonel 
Cox, and formally, in his behalf, thank them for their splendid 



230 NORTH CAROLINA 

conduct, and to say to them "that they had saved that part of the 
line;" and their gallant feat brought Ramseur his commission 
as a major-general, and after that General Cox led the brigade 
that under Anderson and Ramseur had been so distinguished in 
all the fields of blood and carnage in which the army of Northern 
Virginia had won such glory. 

The brigade, augmented by such portions of the First and 
Second regiments as had escaped capture with Johnson's Division, 
had, on the formation of Ewell's Corps, been assigned to that 
corps, and it accompanied General Early in the Valley campaign, 
and in his movement on Washington City ; and it was the fortune 
of General Cox with his brigade to occupy Silver Springs, the 
beautiful residence of the Blairs, within sight of Washington City, 
the nearest approach of any Confederate troops to Mr. Lincoln's 
pleasant quarters in the White House. General Cox rendered 
most efficient service with General Early, and was at length re- 
called to Lee's aid at Petersburg, where he and his command 
shared all the hardships and vicissitudes of Lee's beleaguered 
forces toward the end of that memorable siege. During this time 
he was detached and placed in command of two miles of the front, 
under orders of General R. E. Lee, to whose headquarters his 
reports were made. 

Once more it was General Cox's fortune to draw from General 
Lee an expression of high commendation. It was during the 
retreat from Petersburg, at Sailor's Creek, just after Lee's retiring 
army had been overwhelmed and the utmost confusion prevailed, 
the soldiers straggling along hopelessly, many leaving deliber- 
ately for their homes, and the demoralization increasing every 
moment, while the enemy, in overwhelming numbers, pressed on 
so closely that a stand had to be made to save the trains, upon 
which all depended. Lee sent his staff to rally the stragglers, but 
they met with indifferent success. All seemed mixed in hopeless, 
inextricable confusion, and the greatest disorder prevailed, when 
presently an orderly column approached, a small but entire bri- 
gade, its commander at its head, and colors flying, and it filed 
promptly and with precision into its appointed position. A smile 



WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 231 

of momentary joy passed over the distressed features of General 
Lee, as he called out to an' aide, "What troops are those?" "Cox's 
North Carolina Brigade," was the reply. Taking off his hat and 
bowing his head with courtesy and kindly feeling. General Lee 
exclaimed, "God bless gallant old North Carolina !" This occasion 
has been graphically described in a public address made by Gov- 
ernor Vance after the war. 

Nor was this the end of the brilliant feats of historic interest 
interwoven with the story of Cox and his brigade. It was his 
fortune to play the last act in the drama of the war in which Lee's 
famous army participated. 

General Cox had the distinction and the honor of leading his 
command in the last charge against the enemy before the sur- 
render of the army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox. 

In the temporary absence of General Grimes on duty in other 
parts of the field — his command having been enlarged as Appo- 
mattox was approached — General John B. Gordon directed Gen- 
eral Cox to throw forward the division at a given signal, viz., the 
discharge of a piece of artillery. This order he carried into effect, 
and fought the division until nearly surrounded by the enemy, 
when he received an order through a courier from Grimes to 
withdraw. To extricate the division. Cox charged the enemy, 
and amidst the surprise and confusion, withdrew his command in 
safety. This was the last organized charge made by the army of 
Northern Virginia. 

It was not the first time that General Cox had practiced such 
a ruse-de- guerre in the presence of an advancing foe. After the 
battle of Fisher's Hill, as Early's army was in retreat, pressed by 
the Federals near nightfall. Cox suddenly threw his brigade for- 
ward, engaged the advancing Federals, and after a sharp and brief 
encounter, so delayed the pursuit that under cover of night Early 
sustained no further loss. 

Of General Cox it may be said that no one was more gallant 
during the war than this distinguished Carolinian, and that he 
bears on his person the marks of eleven wounds received in battle. 

After the close of the war, General Cox established himself in 



232 NORTH CAROLINA 

Raleigh, and commenced the practice of law. Soon thereafter, 
under a proclamation of the President; a provisional government 
was established for our State, and in an election which was shortly 
held, Hon. K. P. Battle, then president of the Chatham Coal Fields 
Railway, was elected state treasurer and resigned his position with 
the railway company. General Cox was elected by the Board of 
Directors to succeed him, and entered upon the duties of president. 
The Provincial Government was supplanted in December, 1865, 
when Governor Worth was elected Governor, but in 1867 the 
Reconstruction Acts were passed, setting aside the State gov- 
ernment, and a convention was ordered for the purpose of drafting 
a new constitution. Under the provisions of these military orders 
the leadmg citizens of the State were disfranchised, and the 
reign of the "carpet bagger" was inaugurated. They formed a 
constitution the purpose of which was still to exclude the most 
experienced and competent citizens of the State. Wishing to 
establish himself in the practice of law instead of pursuing the 
work he then was engaged in, for the purpose of making it known 
that he had resumed the practice of his profession rather than 
with the expectation of securing the office, General Cox announced 
himself as a candidate for solicitor of the district, which was 
overwhelmingly Republican. To the honor of the legal profession 
be it said that there was not a member of the bar in this judicial 
district to the manor born who would co-operate with the Re- 
publican Party. Indeed, the candidate for judge was taken from 
one of the eastern counties. The Democratic Executive Com- 
mittee, of which General Ransom was chairman, endorsed General 
Cox as the Democratic candidate, whereupon he was awaited upon 
by several Republicans and informed that if he would run as an 
independent candidate he should be elected without opposition. 
He declined their offer, stating that he preferred to stand with 
his people rather than secure an election which would be a quasi- 
endorsement of their policy. After much difficulty, near the time 
of election, they brought out a candidate for the office who resided 
in Wilmington. General Canby was then commander of the 
department, with headquarters at Charleston, South Carolina, and 



WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 233 

after the election the returns were made to him. To the surprise 
of himself and friends, General Cox was declared elected by 
twenty-seven votes. This office he continued to hold for six years, 
to the general satisfaction of the people. In the meantime he had 
been chosen chairman of the State Democratic Executive Com- 
mittee, and was again informed by leading Republicans that, as his 
administration had been so generally acceptable, if he would not 
accept the chairmanship of the Democratic Committee, there 
would be no opposition to his re-election as solicitor. This he 
again declined to do, knowing that the best interests of his people 
required that he use his energies and his capacity in overthrow- 
ing a party which had brought such general discredit and distress 
on our people. While the position of solicitor was very re- 
munerative, the labors and responsibilities were very great, and 
he was the only Democrat of any prominence who at that time 
held an office in the State. 

He early became an influential member of the State Democratic 
Committee, and in 1874 was chairman when the State was re- 
deemed and a Democratic majority of some twelve or fifteen thou- 
sand was obtained. The next year, when the State convention 
was being voted for and was in doubt, he sent a dispatch from 
his headquarters to Robeson County, "As you love your State, hold 
Robeson," the result of which was to save the State. This achieve- 
ment gained for him the hearts of the conservative people of North 
Carolina generally, and made General Cox a political hero, and 
because of his fine and successful management of political cam- 
paigns, he became a great favorite in the State. 

In 1876 he was a favorite candidate throughout the State for 
governor, but shortly before the convention met Governor Vance 
was brought forward by his friends, and General Cox declined to 
stand in opposition to Vance for that nomination, the result of 
which secured Vance's unanimous nomination; and General Cox, 
as chairman of the Democratic State Committee, conducted the 
greatest campaign that year that has ever been waged in the 
history of the State. In 1877 General Cox was appointed judge 
of the Sixth District of North Carolina, which position he held 



234 NORTH CAROLINA 

for several years, when he resigned to canvass for a nomination 
for Congress. As solicitor he had been able and efficient, and 
had won the respect, esteem and confidence of the people of his 
State, who admired him for his manly characteristics and the high 
plane on which he acted in discharging the duties of his office. 
Wise in counsel and manly and true in his action, he became 
greatly admired, and stood deservedly high in the estimation of 
the people. 

As a judge, his dignity and urbanity, and his fine culture, no 
less than his efficient discharge of his judicial functions, and the 
fairness and impartiality with which he tried the cases brought 
before him, gained for him an enviable reputation. In particular, 
reference may be made to his decision in a case that was of 
national importance, but which he decided against the views of 
his party friends. It involved the right of the Federal courts to 
remove to their jurisdiction cases against revenue officers charged 
with criminal offences by the State ; and Judge Cox fearlessly 
declared what he believed to be the law, that the Federal courts 
had the right to protect Federal officers, and to examine into the 
alleged criminality of their conduct in the discharge of their official 
duties. Although that decision was at that time repugnant to the 
views and inclinations of his political associates, its propriety has' 
now been recognized, and it is conceded to be the law. Elected to 
the Forty-seventh Congress, General Cox took high rank among 
his party associates from the South, who were generally termed 
at the North the "Confederate Brigadiers." His fine person, 
his admirable bearing, his carriage, bespeaking the cultured gentle- 
man no less than the courageous soldier, at once attracted atten- 
tion, while his conservatism, his moderate counsels and his wise 
action established him in the confidence of his political friends and 
in the esteem of his political opponents. Re-elected three times 
with increasing majorities, he served on many important com- 
mittees, especially on the Committee on Foreign Aflfairs, and 
during Mr. Cleveland's administration, as chairman of the Com- 
mittee on Civil Service Reform. He took a firm stand in favor 
of the extension of the Civil Service rules and the maintenance 



WILLIAM RUFFIN COX 235 

of wliat then was hardly more than an experiment in our Gov- 
ernment that had been so long conducted on the spoils system. 
In his speech on Civil Service, in June, 1886, he declared that 
"Civil Service reform was the very essence and genius of 
Democracy." "It brings the offices within the reach of the people 
and says to the tenant of the humblest hamlet, 'Qualify yourself 
to serve your country, and if you have merit, you shall be re- 
warded without respect to influence or power.' " Among many 
of the strong and able speeches made by General Cox in Congress, 
we can only refer here to those on American labor, on Chinese 
immigration, on inter-State commerce and on the tariff. 

About the close of his Congressional career President Cleveland 
offered him an important appointment in connection with the land 
office. As, however, its rewards were simply pecuniary, and 
would take him away from his family and his business at home, 
General Cox declined the position. 

In 1892, General Cox was elected Secretary of the Senate of 
the United States, a position which brought him on terms of 
personal intimacy with the different senators, and he enjoyed their 
esteem and confidence to a rare degree, and he executed the duties 
of that high office with efficiency and great capability. 

During his long and eventful career General Cox has ever been 
a statesman with progressive ideas and high standards. In 1873 
he was chairman of the Executive Committee that established the 
North Carolina Journal of Education in the cause of the common 
schools, and he has ever exerted himself for the amelioration of 
the condition of the people and the elevation of their social con- 
dition. His address at the Centennial of the Mecklenburg Dec- 
laration was remarkable for its broad and lofty patriotism, and, 
in fact, in all of the many important addresses which he has de- 
livered he has sought to enforce the most enlightened public 
action and to instill a love of country and an abiding faith in 
humanity. One of his principal addresses was on the Life and 
Character of General Ramseur, delivered at Raleigh May 10, 1891, 
in which he paid a just but eloquent tribute to that heroic son of 
North Carolina, with whom he had shared the fortunes of war. 



236 NORTH CAROLINA 

Long engaged in agriculture, he for many years was a member 
of the Executive Committee of the State Agricultural Society, 
and he has often sought to promote agricultural interests by 
thoughtful addresses on special subjects, and he has been presi- 
dent of the North Carolina Agricultural Society. Since his return 
from Washington he has resided on his plantation at Penelo, in 
Edgecombe County, which he cultivates with the same care and 
attention that he bestowed on his brigade during his four years 
of glorious warfare. 

In 1880 General Cox lost his wife, and three years later he was 
married a second time to Miss Fannie Augusta Lyman, daughter 
of the Rt. Rev. T. B. Lyman, bishop of North Carolina, but after 
two years of happy married life she also died, leaving two sons 
surviving her. 

General Cox has always been prominent in every field of 
activity in which he has been engaged, and in his church relations 
he has been esteemed by his co-laborers as a zealous and efficient 
layman of the Protestant Episcopal Church, of which he has 
always been a member. He has been an attendant at many of the 
diocesan conventions, and he has likewise been an active trustee of 
the University of the South at Suwanee. 

General Cox has long been closely identified with Masonic inter- 
ests in North Carolina, and at its hands has received the highest 
honors, being Past Grand Master, and now chairman of the 
Masonic Temple Building Association, having introduced in the 
Grand Lodge a resolution which led to this project. 

In June, 1905, General Cox was married to Mrs. Herbert A. 
Claiborne, daughter of Colonel Henry Coalter Cabell of Richmond, 
Virginia, and Jane Alston of South Carolina, his wife. 

5". A. Ashe. 





TPX^ 




FRANKLIN COXE 




, HE marvellous industrial development which has 
wrought such great changes in the upland 
section of the Southern States during the past 
quarter of a century has been chiefly due to the 
courage, sagacity and labor of her own sons. 
Welcoming all newcomers with hospitality 
that no adverse circumstances have ever chilled, yet the South has 
relied for her upbuilding upon the work of her native people. 

In the olden days the only pathways to enduring fame led 
through the fields of political success or military achievement. 
To-day there can be no surer honor and reputation than await the 
successful man of affairs. Many of these have been truly the 
creators of their own fortunes, without the advantages of birth 
or fortune ; but others, and those among the most successful, have 
been members of representative American families, whose honored 
ancestors are classed among the patriots of colonial and revo- 
lutionary history. Among such men stands out pre-eminently 
the name of Franklin Coxe. 

In the early settlement and colonization of North America the 
ancestors of Colonel Coxe bore an important part, and certain 
facts in connection with the early history of North America are 
not generally known, except to the student of colonial records. 

Dr. Daniel Coxe of London, England, was the largest landed 
proprietor in the American colonies. Born about 1640, he lived 



238 NORTH CAROLINA 

nearly ninety years, and attained distinction as an author and 
physician (Philosophical Transactions, 1674). He was one of the 
physicians of Charles H., and also of Queen Anne, and was an 
Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London ; 
also a member of the Royal Society, elected in 1664. Early in life 
he became interested in the colonization of East and West New 
Jersey, and in 1687 bought large proprietary rights from the 
estate of Governor Byllinge, including the right of government. 
He administered the government of West New Jersey through a 
deputy for several years, and afterward disposed of his holdings 
to a company of London merchants. 

In 1698 he purchased the province of Carolina, originally 
granted Sir Robert Heath by Charles I., and in 1699 his title to 
the province of Carolina was reported by the lords of trade to the 
king as valid. 

While the patent covered nearly the whole of North and South 
Carolina, Georgia, Florida and westward to the Mississippi, Dr. 
Coxe claimed only the unsettled parts, south and west of North 
and South Carolina. 

The patent remained in the Coxe family until 1769, when it 
was surrendered to the British Government by the heirs, who 
received in compensation a grant in the colony of New York. 

The petition of Daniel Coxe, great-grandson of Dr. Coxe, in 
this proceeding is shown in the records of the lords of plantations, 
under date of July 14, 1768. 

Dr. Coxe was an ardent member of the Church of England, 
and was greatly interested in the Society for the Propagation of 
the Gospel in Foreign Parts. He died in 1730. 

His eldest son, Colonel Daniel Coxe, came to America in 1702 
to look after his father's interests, and after a return trip to 
England, came back and was prominent in the colonial history of 
New Jersey, being speaker of the Assembly, justice of the 
Supreme Court, and Grand Master of Masons for New York, New 
Jersey and Pennsylvania. He married the daughter of Hon. John 
Eckley. He was the author of "A Description of the Province 
of Carolina," in which the first suggestion of a political union 



FRANKLIN COXE 239 

of the colonies appears. For all the historical statements given 
above the authorities are ample and unquestioned from sources of 
undoubted reliability and the public records. His son, William 
Coxe, was a prominent citizen of Philadelphia, a merchant of large 
business, and often tendered important office. He married Mary, 
daughter of Tench Francis, attorney-general of Pennsylvania 
from 1 74 1 to 1754. 

Tench Coxe, his son, was born in Philadelphia in 1755, and 
died in that city in 1824. He was a man of great prominence, 
especially active in promoting domestic manufactures, being 
styled the "Father of the American Cotton Industry" (Appleton's 
Cyclopaedia of American Biography) . He was appointed by Wash- 
ington assistant secretary of the treasury, and by Jefferson pur- 
veyor of public supplies. He was a delegate to Congress in 1789 
from Pennsylvania, filling an unexpired term. 

The son of Tench Coxe, Francis Sidney Coxe, came to Ruther- 
ford County, North Carolina, in the early part of the century and 
married Jane McBee Alexander, the granddaughter of Colonel 
Elias Alexander of Revolutionary fame. The necessary limita- 
tions of this article do not permit a sketch of this upright man 
and honored citizen. Among his children was Franklin Coxe, the 
subject of this sketch. 

He was born at Rutherfordton, North Carolina, on Novem- 
ber 2, 1839. His education began in the local school of Ruther- 
fordton and was continued for a short while at Greenville, South 
Carolina. In his sixteenth year he entered the sophomore class 
of the University of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia, and was gradu- 
ated as a member of the class of 1857. His inclination led him 
to active work rather than to a professional career, and having 
inherited large interests in the anthracite coal fields of Pennsyl- 
vania, he became a civil engineer. 

The Coxe family were the founders of the firm of Coxe 
Brothers & Company, which afterward developed into the largest 
individual coal operators in America. 

At the outbreak of the war, Franklin Coxe enlisted as a private 
in Company B, Kershaw's Brigade of South Carolina Volunteers, 



240 NORTH CAROLINA 

which was included in Bonham's Brigade, and he did faithful 
and efficient service during the first Bull Run campaign. While 
serving in the Confederate army, he received notice from his 
kinsmen and partners in Pennsylvania, who were joint owners 
with him in his coal lands, that the Government of the United 
States had learned that he was serving in the Confederate army, 
and that proceedings were about to be inaugurated to confiscate 
not only his individual interests, but those of the entire family. 
If his own interests alone had been involved, the question of 
individual sacrifice might have been a perplexing one, but he felt 
that he had no right to cause so great a loss to the relatives and 
partners who had always been true to him. Mr. Coxe went to 
Richmond and frankly laid the whole matter before President 
Davis and the Confederate authorities, and agreed to abide by 
their decision. They told him that he need not longer remain 
in the Confederate service. He furnished a substitute, and was 
given a safe conduct through the lines. Colonel Coxe went to 
Philadelphia, arranged his business affairs so as to protect the 
interests committed to his charge, and then went abroad. Before 
leaving, he placed in the hands of his Philadelphia agent a con- 
siderable sum of money to be expended for the benefit of prisoners 
of war from the Carolinas and Virginia. 

At the close of the war, Colonel Coxe returned to the South, 
and lived first in Greenville, South Carolina, and then in Ruther- 
fordton. North Carolina. In 1877 he removed to Charlotte, North 
Carolina, where he lived for five years, being president of the 
Commercial National Bank, of which institution he remained a 
director until his death. 

In 1882 he left Charlotte, and took a residence in Philadelphia, 
in which city he spent a part of each year. He selected as his 
home his handsome country residence, beautifully situated between 
Green and Broad rivers in Polk and Rutherford counties. North 
Carolina. In this ideal home he dispensed a lavish hospitality. 
In later years much of his time was spent in Asheville, North 
Carolina, where he had large interests. 

Colonel Coxe was associated with Colonel A. B. Andrews in 



FRANKLIN COXE 241 

the building of the Western North Carolina Railroad, being vice- 
president of the company for some years, and in a time of great 
financial depression aiding it by loans from his private means. 
He became greatly impressed with the advantages of Asheville 
as a health resort, believing it to be adapted not only to the require- 
ments of residents of the Southern States during the heat of 
summer, but also for Northern tourists, who, while seeking to 
escape the rigors of a Northern winter, preferred a bracing climate 
to the warmer latitude of Florida. He bought in the center of the 
little mountain village — for such was Asheville twenty-five years 
ago — the beautiful hill called "Battery Porter," and erected on its 
summit the "Battery Park Hotel." This was considered by almost 
every one a very doubtful investment, and none of those who were 
asked to unite in the venture cared to incur the risk. It was the 
first modern hotel in the State (almost the first resort hotel with 
modern improvements in the South), and it became the most 
important factor in bringing about the growth and development 
of Western North Carolina. It attracted the patronage of wealthy 
tourists, the completion of the Western North Carolina Railroad 
having made it accessible, and it was the means of introducing 
the invigorating climate and scenic beauties of the North Caro- 
lina mountains to the citizens of the United States generally. It 
demonstrated also the business possibilities of the "Land of the 
Sky." 

In many other ways Colonel Coxe, by his influence with his 
Northern friends, his investments and his wise counsel, was of 
the greatest help in the advancement of the country which he loved 
so well. It is hardly too much to say that to Colonel A. B. 
Andrews, the builder of the Western North Carolina Railroad, 
and to Franklin Coxe more than to any other men the progress 
and development of Western North Carolina are due. Colonel 
Coxe was the first president of the Charleston, Cincinnati and 
Chicago Railroad (known as the "Three C's"), which extended 
from South Carolina through Shelby and Rutherfordton to 
Marion, North Carolina, and forms part of the Southern Railway. 
Colonel Coxe founded the Battery Park Bank, the most success- 



242 NORTH CAROLINA 

ful financial institution in Western North Carolina, and he was 
a stockholder in many enterprises in Rutherford County, Ashe- 
ville and elsewhere. He was greatly interested in and largely 
promoted cotton manufacturing in many localities. 

While his interests were too varied for him to give much per- 
sonal attention to farming, his beautiful and extensive farm on 
Green River bore testimony to his intelligent comprehension of 
the demands of improved agriculture in the South. He was a 
lover of horses, interested in good roads, building at his own 
expense many miles in Polk and Rutherford counties. He aided 
with his means the authorities of several counties when financially 
pressed, and was always applied to for assistance by the citizens 
of Rutherford and Polk, and in fact of many counties of Western 
North Carolina. 

Colonel Coxe was always affiliated with the Democratic Party, 
and although not yielding his conservative views upon financial 
questions, and not giving adherence to all of the planks of the 
National Democratic platforms of 1896 and 1900, he did not 
change his political faith. While often mentioned as a candidate 
for political preferment, he always declined to enter public life, 
though he sometimes attended as a delegate Democratic national 
conventions. 

Colonel Coxe was especially well read in American history, 
and an unquestioned authority upon the local history and tra- 
ditions of Western North Carolina. His fund of incident and 
anecdote relating to the older people of Rutherford, Polk and 
Burke was marvellously extensive and exact, and was a great 
delight to his friends when he indulged in reminiscence and tra- 
dition. At his country seat. Green River, he was seen at his best, 
and the hospitality there dispensed will forever remain green in 
the memories of his friends. Of commanding presence, 6 feet 
4 inches in height, erect, graceful, courteous in manner and 
charming in conversation, he was widely known in every part of 
the South and in Pennsylvania. 

In 1 86 1, at Green River, North Carolina, he married Mary 
Matilda Mills, sister of Colonel Joseph Mills of Burke County, 



FRANKLIN COXE 



243 



and a lineal descendant of Colonel Joseph McDowell, the dis- 
tinguished Revolutionary patriot. His widow, together with his 
five children — Otis Mills, Francis S., Daisy, who married Mr. 
William T. Wright of Philadelphia; Maude and Tench C. — yet 
survive him. 

His health began to fail some years ago, but his strong consti- 
tution long withstood the assaults of disease. The end came 
finally at his beloved home on Green River on the 2d of June, 1903. 

In 1895 Colonel Coxe erected in memory of his mother a beauti- 
ful memorial Episcopal Church, of native granite, in the town 
of Rutherfordton, his birthplace, and within its shadow his mortal 
remains await the resurrection. 

Fabius H. Busbee 





BURTON CRAIGE 




[he county of Rowan has furnished her full 
share of the leading men of the State of North 
Carolina, and prominent among these eminent 
men for more than forty years stood the subject 
of this sketch. 

Mr. Craige was the youngest son of David 
Craige and his wife, Mary Foster, who was his cousin. He was 
born March 13, 181 1, at the family residence on the south fork 
of the Yadkin River, a few miles above "The Point," where that 
stream flows into the main Yadkin, and about five miles from the 
town of Salisbury. 

The traditions of the Craige family relate that their ancestors 
came direct to Rowan County from Scotland. They had been the 
adherents of Prince Charles, the Pretender, in his unsuccessful 
efforts to regain the throne of his fathers, and soon after the fatal 
battle of CuUoden in 1746, they, with others, deemed it expedient 
to seek safety in America. While others found homes on the 
lower Cape Fear, the Craiges sought a refuge farther in the 
interior. 

The name "Craig" in the Scottish dialect signifies a sharp, high 
rock, or crag, and was probably assumed by them because their 
hall or castle was built on some high rock for safety in the days 
of ancient violence and lawlessness. 

In the sixteenth century John Craig was one of the Scottish 




'7^1^ /^. 



BURTON CRAIGE 245 

Reformers, a coadjutor of John Knox, and it was he who pro- 
claimed the banns of marriage between Queen Mary and James 
Bothwell, while at the same time he openly denounced the union. 
Sir Thomas Craige of Aberdeenshire was a distinguished judge 
in the latter half of the sixteenth century, and through his son, 
Sir Lewis Craige, left descendants, among whom were several 
names in the list of leading Scottish lawyers. It is impossible, 
after the lapse of three hundred years, to connect with absolute 
certainty the Rowan family with that of the Reformer and jurist, 
but it is probable that they are all of the same stock. The Rowan 
family were adherents of the Church of England, as evidenced 
by an old prayer book, edition of 1766, still in the possession of 
the family, with family records on its fly-leaves. 

Four years after the battle of CuUoden, Archibald Craige and 
Mary, his wife, settled in Rowan County about two miles from 
Trading Foard, on the Yadkin. In 1756 Archibald Craige bought 
certain lots in the new town of Salisbury. He died in 1758, 
leaving two sons, James and David Craige. David married Polly 
Foster in 1776, and there were born to this couple three sons and 
two daughters, James, David, Lucy, Mary and Thomas. 

David, the second son, married his cousin, Mary Foster, and 
settled on a farm on the south fork of the Yadkin. The children 
of this couple were Robert Newton, Samuel, John and Burton 
Craige, the last mentioned being the subject of this sketch. 

Burton Craige's early days were spent on the farm and in 
attending such schools as the country afforded. About 1823-25 
he attended a classical school in Salisbury conducted by Rev. 
Jonathan Otis Freeman, M.D., and from this school he went to 
the University of North Carolina, from which he was graduated 
in the class of 1829. Active, energetic and industrious in his 
natural temperament, he immediately began work as editor of the 
Western Carolinian, and as a student of law under David F. 
Caldwell, Esq., and was licensed as a lawyer in 1832, when barely 
twenty-one years old. The same year of his licensure he was 
elected as a member of the legislature from the borough of Salis- 
bury. The borough embraced nearly the same territory com- 



246 NORTH CAROLINA 

prised in the present Salisbury Township, and was a relic of the 
old Colonial times, when New-Bern, Edenton, Wilmington, Bath, 
Halifax and Salisbury were each entitled to a representative in 
the General Assembly of North Carolina. The convention of 
June 4, 1835, called to amend the constitution, abolished borough 
representation, and thenceforth the counties were represented 
according to population. In the old borough system the free 
negroes were allowed by sufferance, without specific legal right, 
to vote at elections, but under the revised constitution this was 
forbidden. Mr. Craige was wont to describe with much zest how 
the different political parties under the old system were in the 
habit of herding and penning the free negroes, and low white 
voters also, in the "Round Bottom" and elsewhere, guarding, 
feeding and "treating" them for several days before the election, 
and then marching them into town and "voting" them en masse. 
Sometimes the opposite party would make a raid upon one of 
these corrals at the last moment and capture and carry off their 
voters in triumph. These abuses, among other things, led to the 
abolition of the borough system. 

In the year 1836 Mr. Craige was united in marriage to Miss 
Elizabeth Phifer Erwin, daughter of Colonel James Erwin of 
Burke County, and granddaughter of General Matthew Locke 
of Rowan, of Revolutionary fame. In this union with this most 
excellent lady, so well and widely connected, Mr. Craige not only 
added to the circle of his influence, but secured a companion and 
helpmeet that adorned his home with the gifts and graces of a 
wife and mother, who made it the abode of love and peace for 
forty years. The children trained by her gentle heart and hand 
rise up and call her blessed, and their voices still tremble with love 
and admiration when they mention her name. 

About this time Mr. Craige's health became somewhat impaired, 
and at the advice of his physicians he visited Europe, sailing from 
New Orleans in a merchant ship. The long sea voyage was a great 
benefit to him, and returning home, he devoted himself for some 
years to the practice of his profession. In these years he gathered 
a host of friends around him, and his practice in the courts of 



BURTON CRAIGE 247 



Rowan and neighboring counties became extensive and lucrative. 
He possessed those quaHties of mind and manner that endeared 
him to the people — plainness of speech, simplicity of life, familiar- 
ity in intercourse, without the semblance of condescension. He 
remembered the names and faces of people, and the humblest man 
whom he had ever known could approach him with perfect 
assurance of recognition and cordial greeting. It is not certain 
that Mr. Craige was peculiarly successful as a farmer himself, 
though he always had a farm, but he could talk of farming and 
all of its various interests with more intelligence, fluency and 
accuracy than the farmer could himself. He was as perfectly at 
ease in the home of the humblest citizen as he was polite and 
courteous in the parlors of the rich and fashionable. He was thus 
eminently qualified for the career of a successful politician, and 
when in 1853 he received the nomination for Congress, he was 
triumphantly elected, as he was also in 1855, 1857 and 1859, ^"^ 
he was a member of Congress in 1861, when the war between 
the States began. 

When the convention of North Carolina was called in 1861 to 
determine what course the State should pursue in the disturbed 
condition of affairs, Mr. Craige was sent as a member of the 
convention from Rowan County, and on the 20th of May he 
offered the Ordinance of Secession in the form in which it was 
adopted, which placed his native State along with her sister States 
of the South in the great struggle against the Federal Govern- 
ment. By this convention he was chosen to be a member of the 
Confederate Congress, along with W. N. H. Smith, Thomas 
Ruffin, T. D. McDonell, A. W. Venable, J. M. Morehead, R. C. 
Puryear and A. T. Davidson. In this Congress he served out 
the extraordinary term, taking part in the proceedings of those 
stirring times. After his term was concluded, he retired to private 
life, though watching with eager interest the mighty struggle in 
which his country was embarked. Though too old to march in 
the rank and file of the army, and without that special military 
taste or training that would fit him to command regiments and 
brigades on the march and battlefield, yet was he well repre- 



248 NORTH CAROLINA 

sented in the Southern army by his three brave and stalwart sons, 
who rushed to the front when the clarion notes of war sounded 
through the land. His eldest son, James, was a cadet at West 
Point Military Academy at the opening of the war, but returned 
home in haste, entered the Confederate army, gave the benefit of 
his acquired knowledge and experience to the training of recruits, 
and then in service on the field rose to the rank of major of 
infantry, and served with credit until the close of the war. His 
second son, Kerr, was in the University of North Carolina when 
the war opened, but laid down his books at once and entered the 
cavalry service in General Rufus Barringer's brigade, where he 
served with credit till the close of the war. When peace returned, 
he studied law, and practiced his profession until his death in 1904. 
Mr. Craige's youngest son, Frank, a mere schoolboy, also entered 
the army and served to the end of the war. He moved to 
Tennessee many years ago, where he now resides, a useful and 
honored citizen. Mr. Craige had two daughters. The oldest 
is the wife of Mr. Alfred B. Young, long a citizen of Concord, 
now of Davidson College, North Carolina. The youngest 
daughter is the wife of Mr. John P. Allison of Concord, North 
Carolina. 

While his sons were in the field, Mr. Craige devoted himself 
to the care of his family at home, and was always ready with heart 
and hand to help along the cause which he so much loved. Though 
retired to private life, he watched with eager interest the progress 
of events, and when the news of some signal victory was reported, 
he rejoiced with the anxious ones at home, and when the news 
of defeat was received, his heart was sad, as were the hearts of 
all. And when at last the flag that bore the blazonry of the 
"Stars and Bars" was furled at Appomattox, he declined to take 
any further part in public affairs, nor would he apply for the 
"removal of his disabilities." He still practiced his profession, 
studied history and recounted the deeds of other days, and sought 
repose from the strife of public affairs in the bosom of his family. 

It was during a visit to the family of his daughter and son-in- 
law, Mr. and Mrs. A. B. Young of Concord, and in attendance 



BURTON CRAIGE 249 

upon the Cabarrus County Superior Court, that the last Messen- 
ger called for him, and he passed away from earth December 30, 
1875. His remains were laid to rest in the Oak Grove Cemetery 
in Salisbury. 

In stature Mr. Craige was herculean, 6 feet and 6 inches in 
height, and otherwise of corresponding physical proportions. 
Seen standing or walking alone he did not seem larger than the 
average man, so well proportioned was his frame, but when seen 
in a crowd he towered like a giant, head and shoulders above his 
fellow-men. Fearless, positive and outspoken in the assertion of 
his convictions, and with a mien and physical form that might 
have awakened the envy and excited the fear of the bravest knight 
in the days of chivalry, he instinctively commanded the respect 
of his associates, and at the same time he charmed them with his 
frank and jovial disposition. He was easily, and as of right, the 
center of any informal company with which he might associate. 

His home life was full of love and gentleness. A kind and 
provident husband, an indulgent father, his children instinctively 
rendered a cheerful obedience to his wishes, and though more than 
a quarter of a century has elapsed since his removal, those children 
cherish in their hearts a worthy admiration for his strength and a 
tender recollection of his kindness and love. 

Jethro Rumple, D.D. 





KERR CRAIGE 




'ERR CRAIGE was one of North Carolina's 
noblest sons, distinguished no less by his private 
worth than by his superior excellence as a pub- 
lic man. He was a Christian gentleman with- 
out blemish, a man of fine intellectual powers, 
an able, sound and successful lawyer and a true 
statesman. He had a warm heart, lofty bearing and polished 
manners. 

In appearance he was of massive frame, with clear-cut features 
and handsome form and face, agreeable, companionable and kind. 
He had a fund of wit and humor in his make-up, and his life was 
a model for young men. 

Mr. Craige was descended from old and influential families on 
both sides. The Craiges came direct to this country from Scotland 
in 1750, and settled near Salisbury. Lieutenant David Craige, the 
great-grandfather of Mr. Craige, was distinguished for bravery 
and patriotic daring in the war of the Revolution. Hon. Burton 
Craige, the father of the subject of this sketch, was born in 
Rowan County in 181 1, and graduated from the University of 
North Carolina in 1829. He was one of the leading public men 
of the State in his day, a member of the legislature in 1835, and 
was elected to Congress in 1853, re-elected in 1855, 1857 and 1859. 
He was a member of the convention of 1861. He was the author 
and introducer of the Ordinance of Secession, which was adopted. 



KERR CRAIGE 251 



By that body he was appointed a member of the Confederate 
Congress. He was always a promoter of all measures tending to 
the success of the Confederate cause. 

No son of North Carolina ever left a more honorable or a more 
consistent record, or performed public services which will better 
bear a close inspection. A sketch of Burton Craige will be found 
elsewhere in this volume. 

Mr. Craige's mother was Miss Elizabeth Phifer Erwin, a 
daughter of Colonel James Erwin of Burke County, a grand- 
daughter of Colonel Martin Phifer of Revolutionary fame and 
a great-granddaughter of Hon. Matthew Locke. She was a 
woman of rare beauty and sterling qualities. 

Kerr Craige was born in Catawba County, near Newton, 
March 14, 1843, where his early life was passed until his father 
removed to Salisbury in 1851. After a good preparatory educa- 
tion at Catawba College, where he always took a high stand, he 
entered the University of North Carolina when sixteen years of 
age, but when he had been two years at that institution, the war 
between the States breaking out, he abandoned his studies, and 
in May, 1861, volunteered as a private in the First North Caro- 
lina Cavalry, being the Ninth Regiment, commanded originally 
by Colonel Robert Ransom, and assigned to Hampton's Brigade, 
afterward Gordon's and then Barringer's Brigade, and was re- 
garded as one of the finest cavalry regiments in the service. It 
was almost constantly in action, and was noted in the army for its 
dash and daring. In the fall of that year Sergeant Craige received 
merited promotion, and shared in all of the enterprises and hard- 
ships of his regiment. In the engagement of the 8th of May, 
1864, at Ground Squirrel Church; he had two horses killed under 
him. When his first, a splendid gray, was shot, he borrowed a 
fine bay from one of the men, telling him if he would let him have 
his horse he could go to the rear. The soldier accepted the offer, 
and soon the bay was killed also. Lieutenant Craige here 
fortunately escaped serious injury, as on many other occasions 
of great danger, for he ever sought to lead when his comrades 
were engaged in warm work on the battlefield. When Colonel 



252 NORTH CAROLINA 

Gordon was promoted to the command of the brigade, he selected 
Lieutenant Craige as aide-de-camp on his staff. In his sketch 
of the First North CaroHna Cavalry Regiment, at top of page 
477 of first volume of "North Carolina Regiments, 1861-65," 
Colonel Cheek writes : "When Beale's men came up and I com- 
manded 'First North Carolina, forward!' the first man I saw 
spring out into the open field was Captain Craige of Company I." 
This is a glorious tribute to Captain Craige for his courage in 
one of the bloodiest fights of the war. After General Gordon was 
killed. Lieutenant Craige became captain of his company in First 
North Carolina Cavalry, and continued to render valiant service 
until captured at Namozine Church, April 3, 1865. He was held 
a prisoner at Johnston's Island until the following July. 

As soon as practicable after peace was restored. Captain Craige 
studied law, attending the celebrated law school of Chief Justice 
Pearson, and he entered on the practice with his father in 1867, 
at Salisbury. In 1870, the Democrats having secured a majority 
in the legislature, Mr. Craige was elected reading clerk of the 
House of Representatives, and at the next election represented 
Rowan County in that body, his fine qualities and superior intel- 
lectual powers winning for him many friends among the public 
men of the State with whom he was brought in contact. 

The following year he was happily united in marriage to Miss 
Josephine Lawrence Branch, the youngest daughter of the dis- 
tinguished General L. O'B. Branch and Mrs. Nannie Blount 
Branch. Mrs. Craige's beauty was equalled only by the loveliness 
of her character. Seven children were born to them — Nannie, 
Burton, Branch, Josephine, Elizabeth, Kerr and William, the last 
mentioned dying in infancy. 

Mrs. Craige died in 1885, and the children were most carefully 
brought up by Mr. Craige's cousin. Miss Bettie Craige, an 
estimable, lovely Christian woman. 

Mr. Craige succeeded by inheritance to the high social and 
influential position which his father, one of the most magnificent 
of North Carolinians, had long enjoyed, and his career, both in 
private and public life, only augmented the respect and esteem in 



KERR CRAIGE 253 



which he was held by his fellow-citizens. While not ambitious of 
public station, he, however, served as director of the North Caro- 
lina Railroad for ten years, resigning the position in 1889, and he 
was also a trustee of the University. 

In 1884 he was nominated for Congress, but his health not 
being robust at that time, he declined the honor ; three years later 
he reluctantly accepted the office of collector of internal revenue 
for the western district of North Carolina, and administered the 
duties of that office acceptably, both to the Government and to 
the people. On Mr. Cleveland's election as President in 1892, 
Mr. Craige was offered the position of third assistant postmaster- 
general, and for four years he performed the duties of that high 
office with distinguished ability. 

While continuing his practice as a lawyer, he was made the 
president of the First National Bank of Salisbury, and because 
of his sterling worth and high integrity, as well as his frank, 
affable manners, he continued to grow in the esteem of his com- 
munity and in the personal regard of his friends. 

Mr. Craige was a most tender, loving father, and made com- 
panions of his children, who idolized him. He was a great reader, 
and loved his books and his home, which was a most hospitable, 
cultured and delightful one. 

Mr. Craige died September i, 1894, survived by five of his 
children. "His death was a lamentable event. His integrity was 
a proverb, and he was conspicuous for his great dignity and for 
a modesty which would become a woman. His great soul hid 
from nothing. 

"He wrought well, set an example for others to live by and left 
the incense of a good name." 

Paul B. Means. 





WILLIAM DRUMMOND 

'S soon as practicable after the Lords Proprietors 
received their grant for Carolina, they com- 
missioned William Drummond to be governor 
of Albemarle. Without doubt this appointment 
was made at the instance of Governor Berkeley, 
who was one of the proprietors and was on the 
spot and knew best about the details of management. Under the 
plan of government devised by the proprietors, the governor was 
to hold office for three years and then was to return to private 
citizenship. At first all the citizens were to meet together to 
compose a Grand Assembly for the purpose of making laws. The 
colonists were few in number and much scattered in the wilder- 
ness in those first days, and but little government was necessary. 
Drummond was probably selected as the governor with the view 
of his promoting a settlement. He is described as a man of 
prudence and abilities, and is said to have been a Scotchman and 
a Presbyterian. One of the main features of the colony was 
absolute freedom of conscience in religious worship, and the fact 
that for the first fifty years the Church of England made no effort 
to have regular services in Albemarle would indicate that the bulk 
of the inhabitants were not of that denomination, while Edmund- 
son in 1672 mentions that he found but one Quaker in the colony. 
Of Drummond's administration no record exists showing any 
dissensions among the inhabitants, and it may be assumed that 



WILLIAM DRUMMOND 255 

all the settlers were too much engaged in making their new homes 
in the wilderness to need much oversight. That the amount of 
tobacco they raised was important is shown by the general agree- 
ment between Maryland and Virginia and "the new plantations" 
for a cessation of tobacco growing, which was not to become 
effective without the concurrence of the "new plantations." At 
the expiration of Drummond's term in 1667, he returned to his 
home in Virginia, which perhaps he had never abandoned, and 
for some years passed out of public view. Some eight years later 
many of the people of Virginia, following the leadership of Bacon, 
rebelled against Berkeley's administration, among them being 
Governor Drummond, ahd it is said that his wife, Mrs. Sarah 
Drummond, was an enthusiastic promoter of the rebellion. She 
passed about the country encouraging the doubtful and cheering 
the hopeful, her constant exclamation being, "We shall do well 
enough," and "The child that is unborn shall have cause to rejoice 
at this rising of the country." But although at first Bacon had 
the large advantage, finally Berkeley succeeded in regaining 
power; and upon Bacon's unfortunate death, the rising was 
speedily suppressed. Drummond realized that he had nothing 
to hope from the moderation of Berkeley, and knew that for him- 
self the issue was one of life or death. He bore himself with 
resolution, but at length fell into the hands of the irate governor. 
When Berkeley beheld Drummond before him, he gave full ex- 
pression to his heartless and vindictive spirit. With an insulting 
bow of feigned respect, he said: "Mr. Drummond, you are very 
welcome. I am more glad to see you than any man in Virginia. 
Mr. Drummond, you shall be hanged in half an hour." With 
great resolution, Drummond replied, "What your honor pleases." 
In two hours Drummond had suffered the penalty, and Berkeley 
declared his lands forfeited and reduced his wife and children 
to penury. Berkeley's course, indeed, was so bloody that when 
relieved of government and he went to England the king declared 
"that old fool has put more people to death in that naked country 
than I did for the murder of my father," and the king refused 
to see him, which so mortified Berkeley that he soon died of a 



256 



NORTH CAROLINA 



broken heart. Berkeley had married the widow of Samuel 
Stephens, the second governor of Albemarle, and she subsequently 
became the wife of Philip Ludwell, who in 1689 was appointed 
governor of Albemarle, or rather, "of that part of our province of 
Carolina that lies north and east of Cape Fear,'' which was the 
first official description of North Carolina, that name being after 
that applied to the northern half of the province. 

Before Lady Berkeley's marriage with Governor Ludwell, Mrs. 
Drummond brought suit against her for some of the lands and 
goods which had been seized as the property of her husband, and 
recovered a verdict in the courts. Mrs. Drummond's daughter 
Sarah afterward became the wife of Colonel Sam Swann, who 
afterward moved to Albemarle and married for a second wife a 
daughter of Major Alexander Lillington. Colonel Thomas Swann 
of Albemarle was a descendant of Governor Drummond, but 
Speaker Sam Swann, of the next generation, was a grandson of 
Major Lillington. The name of Albemarle's first governor, the 
unfortunate martyr to the cause of liberty, has been perpetuated 
by calling the lovely lake in the heart of the great Dismal Swamp 
Lake Drummond. 

5". A. Ashe. 





GEORGE DURANT 




?N his "Curiosities of Literature," D'Israeli says : 
"There was a most bloody-minded 'maker of 
washing balls,' as one John Durant is described, 
appointed a lecturer by the House of Com- 
mons — the Long Parliament — who always left 
out of the Lord's Prayer, 'as we forgive them 
that trespass against us,' and substituted, 'Lord, since Thou hast 
now drawn out Thy sword, let it not be sheathed again till it be 
glutted in the blood of the malignants ;' the malignants being the 
Cavaliers." 

George Durant, one of those who laid the foundations of the 
North Carolina settlement, was born October i, 1632, and had a 
brother, John Durant of London, but the "bloody-minded" parson 
to the Parliament was probably his father rather than brother. 
Of his early life nothing has yet been ascertained. On Janu- 
ary 4, 1659, he was married to Ann Marwood by Rev. David 
Lindsey, in Northumberland County, Virginia; and on Decem- 
ber 24th of that year his son George was born, and on Febru- 
ary 15, 1661, his daughter Elizabeth, and on December 26, 1662, 
his son John. These children were probably born in his Virginia 
home, but whether he lived on the waters of the Chesapeake in 
Northumberland County or in Nansemond County, near Albe- 
marle, is unknown. Other children were born in North Carolina. 
About the time of his marriage, Durant apparently formed the 



2S8 NORTH CAROLINA 

purpose of making a new home for himself in some more favored 
spot, and in the same year joined the party composed of John 
Battle, Dr. Thomas Relfe, Roger Williams, Thomas Jarvis, John 
Harvey, John Jenkins and others to explore and settle the wilder- 
ness of the Albemarle, which was then understood to be beyond 
the limits of the province of Virginia. The others bought land 
from the Indians and speedily located; but Durant passed two 
years in exploring before determining on the best spot for his 
new home, and finally, on March 13, 1661 (perhaps under the new 
style 1662), he purchased Durant's Neck from the Indian king, 
Kilcocanen; and he selected a tract adjoining his own for his 
friend, ''George Catchmaid of Treslick, Gentleman." A year later 
the governor of Virginia having required all those who had seated 
themselves on the Albemarle under deeds from the Indians to 
take out grants from Virginia, Durant requested Catchmaid to 
procure a grant for him, but that gentleman took title to the whole 
tract, including Durant's and his own, in his own name, how- 
ever, giving a written obligation to make a conveyance to Durant 
at some future time. 

Of Catchmaid it may be said that he became speaker of the 
first Assembly of Albemarle, and dying before he had settled with 
Durant, a controversy subsequently arose between Timothy Biggs, 
a wealthy Quaker, who had married his widow, and Durant con- 
cerning these unsettled matters; but as important as Catchmaid 
was in the colony, Durant himself exerted a still greater influence 
among the inhabitants. Some fifteen years after the first settle- 
ment, and when a considerable number of planters had opened 
lands on the Albemarle, and the crop of tobacco was important, 
the Crown officers first attempted to collect duties on tobacco 
shipped from Albemarle to the ports of New England, and this 
proceeding aroused great opposition in the colony. Eastchurch 
was the speaker of the Assembly, and being in England, where he 
had an influential connection, being related to Lord Treasurer 
Clifford, the Lords Proprietors appointed him governor, thinking 
that since the Assembly had chosen him speaker he would have 
influence enough to compose the differences in the colony and 



GEORGE DURANT 259 

secure an enforcement of the navigation laws and the collection 
of the export duties on tobacco. At the same time Miller was 
appointed a customs officer, Timothy Biggs being another. 
Durant was in London shortly after these appointments were 
made, and he resolutely told the Lords Proprietors that Eastchurch 
should never be governor, and that he would revolt before he 
would allow it. This defiant assertion of power, face to face 
with the Lords Proprietors in London, bespoke the man, and 
attests his thorough conviction that he would be able to control 
the action of the people, even to the point of overthrowing the 
established government. When returning to Albemarle, East- 
church stopped at the Isle of Nevis and deputed Miller as presi- 
dent of the Council to conduct the administration until his own 
arrival. On reaching Albemarle, Miller assumed authority, but 
discovering signs of disaffection, in order to secure an Assembly 
that would sustain him, he imposed some new regulations in the 
election of members and called a new Assembly. When Durant 
arrived, he at once organized opposition, and through his agents 
collected a considerable armed force, overthrew the government, 
called a new Assembly, seized Miller and imprisoned him, and 
also Timothy Biggs, the customs officers. Eastchurch eventually 
reached Virginia, but died before appearing in Albemarle. For 
two years the popular government established by Durant con- 
tinued. Acting with him were Jenkins, whom he declared gov- 
ernor ; Alexander Lillington, Thomas Collen, who was the speaker 
of the Assembly; James Blount, Henry Bonner, Thomas Jarvis 
and nearly all of the leading planters. Biggs being a Quaker, 
and wealthy and influential, the few Quakers who were at that 
time in Albemarle did not co-operate with Durant; and being 
harshly treated because of their want of sympathy with the leaders 
in the popular movement, they made a petition to the Lords Pro- 
prietors to redress the grievances sufifered at the hands of Durant 
and "the rebels." 

For several years Durant and his friends controlled Albemarle 
without regard to the commissions issued either by the Crown 
or the Lords Proprietors. Still, the chief purpose in the revolt 



26o NORTH CAROLINA 

appears to have been only to prevent the collection of certain 
taxes or custom duties which they thought illegal, oppressive and 
destructive of the interests of the settlement. A century later 
the principles contended for by Durant, Lillington and the other 
rebels of Albemarle were reasserted by the rebels of all the 
colonies. 

But at that time Albemarle could not contend with the British 
Empire, and when the Crown demanded that the Lords Proprietors 
should maintain established government in Carolina or forfeit 
their charter, matters were accommodated, and Jenkins became 
governor, with Durant as attorney-general, and Durant virtually 
continued the directing influence in the colony ; nor did he restrain 
himself in punishing his enemies, in particular the Quakers com- 
plaining grievously of the oppression to which they were sub- 
jected by the administration. 

Some years later, it being considered best that one of the pro- 
prietors should have the administration, Seth Sothel was appointed 
governor and came to Albemarle ; but he developed into a tyrant, 
and was guilty of many excesses. One of the allegations made 
against him was his propensity for possessing himself of the prop- 
erty of other men. At length, because of some difference between 
himself and Durant, who had roundly denounced him, he seized 
and imprisoned Durant, and later took possession of some of 
Durant's property. This was the straw that broke the camel's 
back. Durant led a movement that resulted in seizing the gov- 
ernor, incarcerating him in a log-house ten feet square, as had 
been done in the case of Miller on a former occasion, and con- 
vening an Assembly, which determined to send him to England 
for trial. Sothel was so alarmed at these proceedings that he 
compromised with the people, and accepted instead a trial by the 
Assembly, and was sentenced to banishment from the colony. In 
these two episodes, which have usually been regarded as the out- 
break of a turbulent disposition on the part of the people, Durant's 
power as a popular leader was evidenced, and the circumstances 
seem to justify a claim to patriotism as well as wisdom and resolu- 
tion. That he was a man of unusual strength of character is 



GEORGE DURANT 261 

apparent, and his actions on the mimic stage of Albemarle would, 
had they been on a larger scale, doubtless entitle him to a high 
place among the patriot leaders of the world. 

He continued to exert a strong influence among the inhabitants 
of Albemarle until his death, his will being admitted to probate 
on February 6, 1694, some thirty-five years after his first arrival 
in Albemarle. 

During his life there were no church buildings in Albemarle, 
except alone those in which the Quakers held their services ; and, 
indeed, as far as known, there were no religious services held in 
Albemarle during that period, except by the Quakers; so that 
whatever were the religious convictions of Durant, no record of 
them is now . preserved. There was entire religious freedom in 
Virginia in 1659, except as to the Quakers, and there does not 
appear to be any foundation for a surmise that the company of 
first settlers locating on the Albemarle were associated together 
in any particular religious communion. 

As Durant was prominent in the colony during his life, so his 
children and grandchildren intermarried with families of conse- 
quence in 'that community; and there are still many of his descend- 
ants living in the State of North Carolina, and in every generation 
they have contributed notably to the social and industrial life of 
the State. 

S. A. Ashe. 






CHARLES EDEN 

• HEN Edward Hyde passed away in 1712, and it 
became necessary to appoint his successor as 
governor of North Carohna, the person chosen 
to fill that post was Charles Eden, who received 
his appointment in the spring of 1713, but did 
not actively begin his administration until 
May 28, 1714, when he was sworn in at a meeting of the Pro- 
vincial Council in North Carolina. 

Governor Eden was born in 1673, and was a little over forty 
}'ears of age when he reached North Carolina. He belonged to an 
ancient family seated in the County Palatine of Durham, in the 
north of England. To this family also belonged Sir Robert Eden, 
last colonial governor of Maryland, and many other men of note, 
including, peers, bishops and statesmen. Governor Eden was 
appointed during the reign of Queen Anne, but soon news of her 
death was brought across the Atlantic, and George I. was officially 
proclaimed her successor by the governor and Council in North 
Carolina on November 6, 1714. 

In the spring of 1715, Governor Eden sent forces to aid South 
Carolina in her Indian War, thus repaying the generous assistance 
rendered by that colony to North Carolina during similar troubles 
in 171 1. At the end of that war a large part of the Tuscaroras 
went to join the Five Nations in New York, that Indian con- 
federacy being thereafter known as the Six Nations. The 



CHARLES EDEN 263 



power of the Indians in North CaroHna was much broken, and 
they gave bvit little trouble afterward. 

By the constitution, or "Grand Model," which the English 
philosopher, John Locke, and Shaftesbury drew up for the gov- 
ernor of Carolina, provision was made for an order of Colonial 
Nobility, whose members were to bear the title of Landgrave. 
Governor Eden was made a landgrave on February 19, 1718, and 
was the last person who ever received that honor. 

In 1 718 another one of the numerous efforts to settle the 
boundary between Virginia and North Carolina was made; but, 
as had been the case during Governor Hyde's administration, the 
plan was abandoned owing to a disagreement among the com- 
missioners. 

Like nearly all of the early governors, Eden belonged to the 
Church of England, and was elected a vestryman of Chowan 
precinct on the 3d of January, 1715. 

During the administration of Governor Eden, the noted pirate, 
Edward Teach, usually known as "Blackbeard," was actively en- 
gaged in operations on the coast of North Carolina, and Eden 
has been charged with being on terms of too great intimacy with 
him. But the only circumstances to give color to this charge are 
the fact that when Teach was slain on November 22, 1718, there 
was found on his body a letter from Tobias Knight saying that 
he thought the governor would be glad to see Teach before the 
latter left America, and the governor's protection of Knight when 
charged with complicity with Teach. At that time there was much 
feeling among the better people of the colony against Eden and 
Knight, and Edward Moseley and Maurice Moore broke into the 
public office to examine the records, for which Eden caused them 
to be punished, and Moseley was debarred from holding office 
for three years. Eden, however, was generally respected, and 
stood well with the people in succeeding years, and was esteemed 
as a man of character. 

The wife of Governor Eden was a widow, Mrs. Penelope 
Golland. This lady had no children by her marriage with Gov- 
ernor Eden, but one of her two children by her former marriage, 



264 NORTH CAROLINA 

named Penelope Golland, was four times married, her last husband 
being Governor Gabriel Johnston. 

The death of Governor Eden occurred in his fiftieth year, on 
the 26th of March, 1722, and he was buried at Eden House, in 
Bertie County. More than one hundred and fifty years later, in 
July, 1889, his remains were exhumed and carried to Edenton, 
where they now rest with those of other colonial governors in the 
burial ground of St. Paul's Church. 

After the death of Governor Eden, Thomas Pollock again be- 
came acting governor. In a few months he also died. Then 
President William Reed administered the affairs of state until 
the arrival of George Burrington, who was regularly commis- 
sioned by the Lords Proprietors. 

North Carolina's ancient colonial capital, the town of Edenton, 
is so called in honor of Governor Eden, and worthily preserves 
his memory. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 






WELDON N. EDWARDS 

fELDON N. EDWARDS, distinguished as a 
statesman and agriculturist, was born in North- 
ampton County, two miles from Gaston, in 
1788. The Edwards family came to this State 
from Virginia, John Edwards of Brunswick 
County, Virginia, having died there in 1713. 
One of his sons, Benjamin, was the ancestor of the subject of this 
sketch, whose father was also named Benjamin Edwards. Of 
the same family was Isaac Edwards, who was a member of the 
first Provincial Congress in August, 1774, representing Craven 
County. 

After obtaining his license to practice law, Weldon Edwards 
settled in Warren County, he having been educated ,at the cele- 
brated academy at Warrenton, and having read law with Judge 
Hall in that county. He was a kinsman of Nathaniel Macon, 
and was intimate with that statesman, who then was at the head 
of the Democratic Party in North Carolina, and himself affiliated 
with those who held the same political opinions. At the time of 
his entrance into public life, however, and for many years after- 
ward, there was practically but one party in the United States, 
although there were shades of differences in political action. His 
first appearance in public life was in 1814 as a representative of 
Warren County in the House of Commons, to which position he 
was re-elected the following year. In 181 5 Mr. Macon, who had 



266 NORTH CAROLINA 

long been a member of the House of Representatives, being elected 
to the Senate, resigned, and Mr. Edwards, at the early age of 
twenty-eight, became his successor in the House of Representa- 
tives, and continued to represent his district in that body for 
eleven years, when he voluntarily retired, declining to become 
a candidate again. 

In 1823 Mr. Edwards had married Miss Lucy Norfleet of Hali- 
fax County, and he now sought 'the pleasures of domestic life on 
his fine farm, enjoying the society of a charming circle of friends, 
which was much more in consonance with his gentle nature than 
the turmoil of a political career. 

His leading characteristics were charity, benevolence and sym- 
pathy, and of him it has been said : 

"His life was gentle; and the elements 
So mixed in him that Nature might stand up 
And say to all the world, 'This was a man.' " 

After nearl}' a decade of retirement, Mr. Edwards again entered 
public life, and in 1833 became senator from Warren County, and 
continued to serve as such until 1844. That term of service em- 
braced a period of unusual interest in political action. General 
Jackson's administration was undergoing a trying lOrdeal. He 
was at enmity with Henry Clay, the old leader of the Democratic 
Party, and with Calhoun, who had been elected Vice-President 
along with him; his Force Bill against South Carolina had 
alienated many friends at the South, while his warfare on the 
national bank had driven off many others of great influence in 
every section of the Union ; the Whig Party in opposition to his 
administration was taking shape ; and in North Carolina the west- 
ern counties were clamoring for a revision of the constitution, 
being more earnest and eager now that the western people of 
Virginia had been successful in having the constitution of that 
State reformed in their interest; and the movement for internal 
improvements had been intensified by- the great convention held 
in 1833. By a single vote a constitutional convention was called 
in 1835 ; and Mr. Edwards, along with Mr. Macon, represented 



WELDON N. EDWARDS 267 

Warren County in that body. Mr. Macon presided over its delib- 
eration, while Mr. Edwards took a prominent part on the floor. 
Particularly was he pronounced in regard to the question of elim- 
inating from the constitution all religious tests as a qualification 
for office. He said that in private life he never expressed his 
religious views, but he deemed it incumbent on him to seek to 
engraft on the constitution the most liberal provisions in regard 
to this subject. He submitted an amendment in effect allowing 
freedom of worship and of speech in all matters of religion, and 
forbidding acts of licentiousness and practices inconsistent with 
the peace and safety of the State. He spoke of the agitated state 
of the public mind, in some counties the excitement bordering 
almost on frenzy, but he declared it was the duty of gentlemen 
to throw themselves into the breach and stem this mighty current 
of popular delusion. No one prized more highly than he did the 
approbation of his constituents — to receive that approbation he 
regarded, as his highest reward ; to deserve it the highest praise. 
But on a subject like this he would not exchange the privilege 
of speaking his own sentiments freely and independently for the 
plaudits of the world. 

His view, however, did not prevail, and the only change made 
in the constitution at that time was to substitute the Christian 
religion for the Protestant religion, admitting Roman Catholics to 
office. The work of the convention was of particular interest in 
allowing increased political power to the western counties, and 
it did not receive the vote of either Mr. Macon or Judge Ruffin 
or Mr. Edwards. At the polls the people divided so sharply on 
sectional lines that in some of the eastern counties no vote was 
cast for the adoption of the amendments, while in some of the 
western counties the vote was unanimous in favor of them. 

North Carolina at that period could boast of a galaxy of public 
men never before equalled in her history, and Mr. Edwards, while 
not one of the greatest, exercised a strong influence because of the 
purity of his life and the excellence of his character. He remained 
for a decade a prominent figure in the State Senate, and then 
again retired and addressed himself exclusively to his agricultural 



268 NORTH CAROLINA 

pursuits. He is described as a princely gentleman. "Nature made ' 
him a nobleman, though in faith and practice he was a devoted 
Democrat ; a prince among Democrats, a Democrat among princes. 
He was a scientific farmer, and loved his grasses and grain, his 
horses and cattle, his sheep and hogs, and it was delightful to 
listen to his discourses about farming and stock raising. His 
reading was extensive, and he was well informed on political sub- 
jects, and his judgment was sound and clear. He was grave and 
thoughtful, but his social nature relaxed at every grasp of the 
hand and his benignant smile warmed the hearts of his friends. 
He was delightfully companionable, and could delude every guest 
with the idea that he was conferring pleasure instead of receiving 
hospitality. Courtly in his manners, he was yet genial, cordial, 
jocose and exceedingly fond of young people, although his 
domestic felicity had been in some measure marred by his being 
denied any children." 

In 1850, when there was great political agitation, he again re- 
appeared in the Senate Chamber, and presided over that body; 
and when in May, 1861, the momentous questions then arising 
demanded the services of the most experienced public men, he 
was again called from his retirement, and was elected a delegate 
from Warren County to the State convention. At that time he 
was about seventy-three years of age. He was a leader of the 
ardent and restless men who had been impatient at the tardy 
movements in North Carolina, and like them he hailed with delight 
the prospect of separation from the Northern people, whom he 
despised, and a government which no longer respected the com- 
pact between the States to which it owed its being. When the 
convention met on the 20th of May, he was elected the presiding 
officer, his competitor for that distinguished position being Hon. 
William A. Graham of Orange. As a presiding officer it is said 
he had no superior. His experience as speaker of the State Senate, 
and his entire familiarity with parliamentary rules, made it an 
easy task for him to govern a deliberate body composed of so 
many distinguished delegates. Not learned or classical as Mr. 
Badger or Governor Graham or Judge Ruffin, and perhaps some 



WELDON N. EDWARDS 269 

other members of the body, he was their equal in comprehension, 
in experience and integrity. He possessed almost every virtue 
and many talents to an extraordinary degree, and he sustained 
himself admirably in every position in which he was placed. The 
convention held four sessions, and finally adjourned in May, 1862. 
Relieved of his public functions, Mr. Edwards employed himself 
in preparing a memoir of his kinsman, Hon. Nathaniel Macon, 
which was published in July, 1862. Mr. Macon had been his 
political mentor, and he had followed his precepts as a public 
man throughout his life. Indeed, there was much similarity of 
thought and action between them. Both had an abiding confidence 
in the capacity of man for self-government, and favored the largest 
measure of public liberty; both were close to nature, and found 
their chief happiness in agricultural pursuits. Equally with both 
the practice of severe virtue was the foundation of their admirable 
characters. 

After the war, although his large estate had been greatly im- 
paired, Mr. Edwards still retained a handsome sufficiency. He 
was born when the State of North Carolina was an independent 
sovereignty not connected with any other American State except 
by bonds of amity. He lived through the whole period of her 
existence as a member of the American Union, and presided over 
the convention that had declared her again a separate and sov- 
ereign commonwealth, and he passed through the period of the 
great Civil War, and beheld all the horrors of reconstruction; 
but he lived to see the white people of the State once more in 
control of the legislative department, with high hopes of re- 
establishing peace, contentment, prosperity and happiness in the 
land. And for more than two generations he had been a prom- 
inent actor in matters of public concern. 

He passed away on December 18, 1873, at the age of eighty-five 
years. 

5". A. Ashe. 




RICHARD EVERARD 




[HOUGH all of the colonial governors of North 
Carolina were of gentle blood, and one (Ed- 
ward Hyde) was closely related to the royal 
family, none held any hereditary rank save the 
subject of this sketch, Sir Richard Everard, 
Baronet. 

Governor Everard was born in England, and was the head of 
an ancient family which had been seated at Much Waltham, in 
the County of Essex, since the reign of Henry HI. It was on 
the 17th of July, 1725, that Everard was sworn in as governor 
of North Carolina at Edenton. His predecessor as governor, and 
also his successor in that office, was George Burrington, who was 
governor for two separate terms. Though a man of great energy 
and some ability, Burrington was fierce and relentless in his 
enmities, and he was particularly hostile to Everard, by whom he 
had been displaced, and who was allied with those who had caused 
his dismissal as governor. On one occasion Burrington went to 
Everard's house demanding satisfaction, and hurled a torrent of 
profanity at him, and threatened to burn his house over his head. 
In Everard's time the province made very rapid progress 
to the westward and to the southward, and while he was governor, 
in 1729, the boundary between Virginia and North Carolina was 
finally established. It was in the same year that the Lords Pro- 
prietors, with the exception of the Earl of Granville, sold the 



RICHARD EVERARD 271 

province of Carolina to the Crown, after which the king appointed 
the governors of North Carolina. 

There had been two factions or parties in the province for many 
years. Burrington had acted with the leading inhabitants, and 
was opposed by the chief justice and other officials who repre- 
sented the interests of the Lords Proprietors ; and when Everard 
came he naturally was influenced by those who had secured Bur- 
rington's dismissal, and he was at enmity with the other faction. 
This continued until the sale to the Crown became known, and 
then Everard completely changed his course, and denouncing his 
former associates, allied himself with the Popular Party. He 
assented to the passage of an act providing for the issue of a large 
amount of paper currency, and otherwise aided the measures of 
the Popular leaders, so that the Assembly made him a present of 
£500, the only present they ever made to any governor. When 
Burrington heard rumors of the sale of the province, he left his 
home on Governor's Creek, on the lower Cape Fear, and hastened 
to England, and secured the appointment of governor from the 
Crown, and returning, was sworn in on the 25th of Febru- 
ary, 1 73 1. 

Shortly after this, Sir Richard Everard left North Carolina, 
going to England by way of Nansemond, Virginia. At Nanse- 
mond his daughter Susannah married David Meade, and from 
them is descended the noted Meade family of Virginia, among 
whose members were Colonel Richard Kidder Meade and Major 
Everard Meade of Revolutionary fame, and Bishop William 
Meade of Virginia. Governor Everard's wife was Susannah 
Kidder, daughter and co-heiress of Richard Kidder, Lord Bishop 
of Bath and Wells. Governor Everard died on the 17th of Febru- 
ary, 1733, in London, and his remains were interred at his old 
home in Essex. His eldest son. Sir Richard, continued to live 
in North Carolina, and was a prominent member of the Assembly ; 
on his death the baronetcy descended to his younger brother. 
Sir Hugh, upon whose death it became extinct. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 




EDMUND FANNING 




[T is not fit that the history of a person should 
appear till the prejudice both of his antagonists 
and adherents be softened and subdued," wrote 
the kindly and philosophic Addison. 

The immediate chroniclers of a stirring period 
always envelop its heroes in such a halo of 
glory that it is difficult to discover their true dimensions ; and, on 
the other hand, they paint an active and energetic enemy in colors 
so dark that the outline of his person and character is wholly 
obscured. The historian, however, must have clear insight. He 
must be neither dazzled by the light nor blinded by the shadows. 
He must be just and yet not justify the sinner. In short, he must 
give us the portraits of men and not fanciful pictures of demi- 
gods or demons. 

This is an attempt to paint Edmund Fanning, obnoxious official 
and ardent Tory as he was — not all defects, but a compound of 
defects and virtues. 

Son of Colonel James Fanning and Hannah Smith, he was 
born on Long Island in 1737. The Fannings were of the middle 
class, and though English, came from Ireland to this country. 
Edmund graduated from Yale College in 1757, studied law in 
New York, came to North Carolina in 1761, and located at 
Hillsboro. He soon acquired a very large practice in the county 
and superior courts. He represented Orange County in the 



EDMUND FANNING 273 

colonial Assemblies of 1762, 1766, 1767 and 1768, and the bor- 
ough of Hillsboro in 1770 and 1771 ; qualified as register of deeds 
of that county in May, 1763, and continued such until his resig- 
nation October, 1768; was a judge of the Superior Court in 1766 
and colonel of militia for several years before he returned to New 
York in 1 77 1. In that colony, both before and after his return, 
he was surveyor-general. In 1777 he enlisted a regiment of Tories 
and commanded it during the remainder of the war. In 1783 
he retired to Nova Scotia, and was appointed lieutenant-governor 
of that province in September of that year. Later he was trans- 
ferred to Prince Edward Island as governor, and continued such 
for nearly nineteen years. In 1793 he was made a major-general 
in the British army. He was promoted to lieutenant-general in 
1799, and to general in 1808. He died in London February 28, 
1818, leaving a widow and three daughters. He was an A.M. of 
Yale in 1764, of King's College, New York, in 1772; a D.C.L. of 
Oxford University in 1774 and an LL.D. of Yale and Dart- 
mouth colleges in 1803. (See 8 Colonial Records, p. 41, and 
Haywood's Tryon, 83.) 

Surely a man who had so many honors from such varied sources 
bestowed upon him must have been of distinguished merit. 

He was a young fellow when he came to North Carolina — only 
twenty-four — and no doubt he looked to the future with the self- 
confidence and assurance of youth, yet in a few years such a storm 
burst about him that he was glad to escape with his life, leaving 
his property and reputation to the vengeance of his foes. 

A brief statement of the conditions that made him so obnoxious 
is necessary. A populace free and independent then inhabited 
the hills and valleys of the middle section of North Carolina. 
They were bold in demanding and bold in defending what they 
deemed their rights. Unfortunately, a large, very large, element 
among them was wholly illiterate and filled with all the prejudices 
and passions of the unlearned. As a whole, then, it was a free 
but unenlightened democracy, vaguely conscious of its power, 
peculiarly sensitive to the appeal of the artful demagogue, and 
when aroused, very dangerous to its foes. Over against this 



274 NORTH CAROLINA 

democracy was the smaller but more influential privileged 
classes — the landed gentry, members of the professions, mer- 
chants, etc., including all who did not live by the labor of their 
hands. From this class all or nearly all of the county officials 
were selected by a central authority, so they were not at all re- 
sponsible to the people. In many instances these office-holders 
were adventurers, men who had their fortunes to make, and were 
not very scrupulous in the means used to acquire their fortunes. 
Of this class was Edmund Fanning, already an aristocrat in 
culture and intelligence, and anxious to become one in wealth, in 
influence and in power. To a man so well equipped and so am- 
bitious, a stay in the "back country" was but a stepping-stone to 
a higher and better and broader sphere of action. He must attach 
himself, then, to Governor Tryon, the "source of honor" in the 
province, and not to the people, and strive to make the attachment 
mutual. In a few years this indefatigable, earnest gentleman, a 
fair embodiment of the social amenities of the time, had accom- 
plished his purpose, and no one had more influence with Governor 
Tryon and none was more respected by the aristocracy of the 
province than he. His relations with Governor Tryon were 
particularly close, and he was indeed in such full accord with him 
that when the governor displaced Maurice Moore from his judge- 
ship because of his revolutionary action in the Stamp Act times, 
he appointed Fanning to the vacancy. 

To the people of Orange County he at first assumed and in- 
tended to maintain the patronizing air of a lord of the manor. 
They, however, were too independent to bend the pregnant hinges 
of their knees to any self-constituted master, however benevolent 
and kind he might be. This was the raw spot in the situation 
at the beginning of the Regulator troubles. The special irritants 
were these : 

Fanning was fast acquiring wealth as a speculator in lands 
and as a lawyer with a large practice. He liked to make a show 
of his wealth in fine raiment and handsome surroundings. Mean- 
time, the people themselves were struggling with the difficulties 
that arose from an insufficient circulating medium and no market 



EDMUND FANNING 275 

for their surplus farm products. It was discovered that while 
the fee bill provided "For registering a conveyance or other 
writing, 2 shillings 8 pence," Fanning, as register of Orange 
County, was charging 6 shillings for each deed. This to plain 
people was extortion and robbery, and in it, said Husbands and 
others of their leaders, is the source of all this wealth so flauntingly 
displayed. So much was made of the situation, indeed, that to 
most of the country people Fanning became a mere common 
robber. This, however, was not true. A simple computation, 
based upon the records in Hillsboro, shows that the average 
income from the register's office, allowing 6 shillings for each 
deed, was a little less than £70 sterling. In this office James 
Watson was the deputy and did all the work, so his compensation, 
whatever it might have been, must be deducted from the £70 
sterling. Fanning was register from May, 1763, to October, 1768. 

It seems, too, that Fanning honestly believed that in law he had 
a right to charge 6 shillings (75 cents in our money. 7 Colonial 
Records, 491) for each deed — "conveyance or other writing." 
A conveyance, he argued, is complete in itself when executed and 
delivered, therefore the certificates of examination of a feme 
coverte, and that those examining are justices of the peace, are 
each, though endorsed on the same parchment, distinct writings, 
and entitle the register to charge 2 shillings 8 pence each addi- 
tional for their record. The whole charge, then, for such a paper 
would be 8 shillings, but acting under advice of the County Court, 
and out of abundance of caution, he charged only 6 shillings in 
each case. In this view he was sustained by Mr. John Morgan of 
London, the attorney-general of the province, and the attorney- 
general of England, De Grey. (8 Col. Records, 27, 33. See also 
322, Haywood's Tryon, 79 seq.) This seems to acquit Mr. 
Fanning of positive dishonesty, and makes his life in North Caro- 
lina better accord with his subsequent upright and distinguished 
career. 

The persistent hatred of him by the Regulators is well known — 
their constant pursuit of iiim, their lying in wait to kill him, their 
firing into his house during his absence, their brutal maltreatment 



276 NORTH CAROLINA 

of him at the breaking up of the Hillsboro Superior Court in 1770, 
and their destruction of his house and household goods at the 
same time. Smarting with his recent disgrace, not atoned for by 
the bloodshed of Alamance or the executions at Hillsboro, he left 
the province in 1771, never to return, except for a short time in 
the spring of 1775. 

In person he was about medium height, compactly built, strong, 
active, energetic, untiring. In his social relations he was kind, 
thoughtful and considerate, endearing himself to his associates in 
college and in his subsequent life. He was very hospitable, but 
free from the vices of drunkenness and gaming. He was very 
public spirited, being instrumental in providing the town of Hills- 
boro with a parson, a schoolmaster, a market house and a clock. 

On the other hand, he was, at best, patronizing and super- 
cilious to his inferiors, and when they thwarted him, haughty and 
overbearing. He had no sympathy for the masses. On the con- 
trary, on every occasion, he showed his contempt for them. He 
was high-spirited, bold and determined, and when aroused, pug- 
nacious and vengeful, and his personal pride amounted to egotism. 
In temperament, then, he was a reactionary, and his treatment 
in North Carolina, co-operating with this, made him an active 
and malign foe to the liberties of the people. Tradition heaps all 
manner of infamy upon him, but it must be remembered that tra- 
dition is largely thousand-tongued rumor transferred from the 
past to the present; and there is no record of, no contemporary 
allusion to, this infamy. In truth, he was a scapegoat for his 
brother officials, and for many of their sins his reputation suffers 
to-day. So, though he was not an angel of light, he was very 
far from being the demon that tradition, handed down by his 
enemies, makes him. 

Frank Nash. 




- ■:;' l^/A^^-i £^r^ yV3^ 



: ^c-^^x^^ 




THOMAS C. FULLER 




'NE of the most forceful men who Hved in North 
Carolina during the eventful period of Recon- 
struction and of the upbuilding of the State 
under the new conditions was Thomas C. 
Fuller of Raleigh. The paternal grandfather 
of Judge Fuller was Bartholomew Fuller of 
Franklin County, who, coming of age at the opening of the Revo- 
lutionary War, was a patriot soldier "in the times that tried men's 
souls." On the restoration of peace he settled down as a Baptist 
minister, becoming from his walk in life, strong characteristics 
and fine abilities a preacher of more than local reputation, and 
exerting a wide influence not only in his own denomination, but 
among all the people of the county. He married Miss Sarah 
Cooke, of the well-known family of that name, which has so long 
been prominent in the affairs of that county, and noted for its 
sterling worth. His son Thomas was a merchant, and engaged in 
extensive mercantile operations at Fayetteville. He married 
Catherine Raboteau, a lady of Huguenotic descent, of fine educa- 
tion "and gentle disposition; but he died young, and his widow, 
with three small children largely dependent upon her efforts for 
support, returned to Franklin County, where their kindred lived. 
Their eldest child was a daughter, Sarah, who subsequently 
became the wife of Mr. R. H. J. Blount, originally of Washington, 
North Carolina, but after the war a resident of Durham. The 



278 NORTH CAROLINA 

second child was Bartholomew ; he graduated with high dis- 
tinction at the University, read law and settled at Fayetteville. 
He was, however, employed in positions of honor and trust at 
Washington City until the breaking out of the war between the 
States, and then he held similar positions under the Confederate 
Government. After the war he resumed the practice of his pro- 
fession at Fayetteville, and later at Durham. He was a gentle- 
man well skilled in business, of fine culture, agreeable address and 
admirable characteristics, and he was greatly esteemed and be- 
loved. The youngest child of his parents, the subject of this 
sketch, was born at Fayetteville in February, 1832. Accompany- 
ing his mother to Franklin County, his early days were spent in 
that county, chiefly at the home of his kinsman. Captain Jones 
Cooke, and he was prepared for college by Mr. John B. Bobbitt 
at Louisburg. His surroundings during boyhood were fortunate. 
He was allied with the most respected persons in his community, 
and he grew to man's estate encouraged by his kinsmen to strive 
for the high prizes of life. He entered the University and was 
an apt scholar; but in June, 1851, he accepted a favorable offer 
to engage in mercantile business at Fayetteville, and began a 
business career. He, however, found that pursuit distasteful. His 
disposition led to a more intellectual life, for which, indeed, he 
was well fitted by his natural endowments ; and in 1855 he began 
the preparation for a professional career by entering the law school 
of Judge Pearson, at Richmond Hill, and the next year, having 
obtained his license, be began the practice at Fayetteville, meeting 
with good success from his first entrance into the bar. 

In politics he was an ardent Whig, and was strongly attached 
to the Union and bitterly opposed to what he considered the wild 
scheme of Secession. His judgment was that the South could 
not withstand the superior force of the North, and it waS not 
desirable to resort to a dissolution of the American Union for the 
sectional causes that then inflamed the Southern mind, and which 
seemed to sweep Southern statesmen off their feet. In i860 he 
was an active supporter of the Constitutional Union Ticket, Bell 
of Tennessee and Everett of Massachusetts being the candidates 



THOMAS C. FULLER 279 

for President and Vice-President, and he cast what influence he 
possessed in favor of Union and peace. But he was a Southerner 
and a man of courageous spirit. He was for the Union as long 
as the Union was possible, and for peace as long as there was 
no war. But when war came he was among the first to shoulder 
his musket and hasten to the front in defense of the South. In 
April, 1861, he joined the La Fayette Light Infantry of Fayette- 
ville, of which Joseph B. Starr was captain, and which became 
Company F of the First North Carolina Regiment, known to 
history as the "Bethel Regiment ;" and he began his war experi- 
ence in the first battle of the contest, at Bethel, Virginia. 

On the expiration of the six months for which that regiment 
was organized, he united with Captain Starr in raising a light 
artillery company, in which nearly all their old companions in 
arms re-enlisted, Starr becoming the captain and Fuller the first 
lieutenant, and he immediately again entered on active service. 
Toward the end of January, 1862, Starr's Battery was stationed 
at Fort Fisher, where it remained on duty defending the lower 
Cape Fear until September, when it was ordered to Kinston. It 
participated in the battle of December 17th at the Neuse River 
Bridge, a short distance below Goldsboro, and Lieutenant Fuller 
on that occasion was conspicuous for his conduct. The historian 
of the Thirteenth Battalion, describing that affair, says : 

"While the infantry was attacking on the left, Lieutenant Thomas C. 
Fuller brought one piece of Starr's battery into position just where the 
county road crosses the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad, and went into 
action under the heavy fire of the enemy's eight guns. The fight at this 
point was short, but bloody. Indeed, so great were the casualties in this 
engagement to the small detachment about this one devoted piece of 
artillery, that Lieutenant Fuller himself served the gun, bringing ammuni- 
tion, cutting fuse, etc. 

"Around him lay the bodies of his fallen comrades, the dead, the 
wounded, but the young lieutenant, with coolness and intrepidity, served 
his piece himself, and heroically persisted in making a brave defense, 
notwithstanding the heavy and deadly fire of the enemy. At sunset the 
fight was over, the enemy's fire slackened and finally ceased, but Colonel 
Shaw's Eighth Regiment and Lieutenant Fuller's piece of artillery held 
the position until a late hour in the night, when orders were given to 



28o NORTH CAROLINA 

fall back to the county bridge. During this time General Thomas L. 
Clingman passed down the line and warmly complimented Lieutenant 
Fuller and his men for the excellent work which they had performed 
in sustaining a fight against odds so tremendous.'' 

A year later Lieutenant Fuller was elected to represent the 
Fayetteville district in the Confederate Congress, and the same 
historian in the regimental histories of North Carolina adverts 
to his departure from the command, and incidentally pays him a 
merited tribute: "Lieutenant Fuller continued with his company 
until in 1863 he was elected a representative in Congress from 
his district, and he left the military service and entered upon that 
public career which his matchless abilities rendered a succession 
of brilliant triumphs. He loved danger for danger's sake ; he was a 
friend and confidant of his men, while he strictly enforced discip- 
line ; and though the soldiers crowded about the ballot-box to vote 
his political preferment eagerly, they bade him farewell from the 
mess table and the tent with sorrow." He had enlisted as a private 
with these men in April, 1861, and had served as a soldier with 
them ; and they had at the reorganization elected him their first 
lieutenant to command them; and the longer their intercourse, 
the more they valued him. His fine, manly bearing won their 
admiration, while his courage and sympathetic spirit endeared 
him to all, both rank and file. "He was a good private and a 
better officer, and he loved danger for danger's sake." Such is the 
testimony of a stalwart veteran who served with him and shared 
with him the vicissitudes of the arduous service of the great 
war. 

During the subsequent period of the conflict between the States 
he remained in the Confederate Congress, and although the 
youngest member of the body, he was far from being the least 
influential or the least useful. His experience in the field gave him 
a position among his associates, who sought his counsel as know- 
ing the needs, spirit and desires of the men at the front. His 
sympathies were always for the soldier boys. He knew their 
hardships and their sufferings, and he sought to promote all 
measures that tended for their relief. When the war 



THOMAS C. FULLER 281 

closed he returned home and entered upon the practice of his 
profession. 

A State convention having made the necessary changes in the 
constitution, President Johnson declared the State restored to the 
Union; and in conformity with his views, an election for repre- 
sentatives in Congress was held in the fall of 1865, at which 
Colonel Fuller was elected the member from his district. But the 
House of Representatives refused to admit the State to repre- 
sentation, and he was not allowed to take his seat. In 1868, when 
the next election was held for Congressman, he was again a candi- 
date, but his opponent was awarded the certificate of election by 
the military officers at Charleston, under whose supervision the 
election was held. In the Presidential election of 1872 Colonel 
Fuller, as a district Presidential elector, made an extensive 
canvass, and warmly urged the election of Horace Greeley. As a 
peace offering on the part of the South, and as indicating the 
purpose of Confederate soldiers to fully accept the results of the 
war and acquiesce in the abolition of slavery, of which Horace 
Greeley had been the great apostle, he urged his election as the first 
President of the reunited country. 

Hardly had Colonel Fuller begun to practice when an incident 
occurred that brought him into great prominence. A negro was 
arrested at Fayetteville for attempted assault on a white girl. 
As he was being conveyed to the court-house a great crowd 
gathered, and some one fired a shot that killed the negro. A 
young man named Toler was arrested for the murder. He was 
tried by a military court that was convened at Raleigh. Colonel 
Fuller appeared to defend him. The judge advocate. Colonel 
Avery of the United States Army, employed Colonel E. G. Hay- 
wood, a very great advocate, to aid in the prosecution. Toler was 
a simple citizen. But such was the condition of affairs that he 
was tried by a military tribunal, a proceeding repugnant to the 
genius of a free people. The circumstance amply illustrates the 
fearful conditions of that epoch of terror. It was a period of 
great anxiety, and the people were deeply interested in the action 
of the military court. Colonel Fuller bore himself well. He 



282 NORTH CAROLINA 

managed the case admirably, and saved the life of his client. 
Toler was acquitted, to the great satisfaction of the people, and 
Colonel Fuller at once became famous as an attorney, and upon 
the opening of the Federal courts he was employed in many cases 
where the parties were charged with infractions of the Federal 
laws, new laws to the people and odious and oppressive. Multi- 
tudes of suitors from distant counties attended these courts, and 
Colonel Fuller's wide acquaintance and fine reputation gained 
for him a lucrative business. In 1870 he appeared for the defend- 
ants in the Ku Klux cases, parties charged with violating the 
Enforcement Act ; and when Chief Justice Pearson apprehended 
that he himself was to be impeached for his action as chief justice 
in 1870, he retained Colonel Fuller to defend him. Indeed, his 
practice, especially in the Federal Court, had become so large 
and important that he found it desirable to move to Raleigh as a 
more central location. Accordingly, in March, 1873, he changed 
his residence to Raleigh, becoming a member of a law firm then 
established, Merrimon, Fuller & Ashe, his associates being United 
States Senator Merrimon and Captain S. A. Ashe. From the 
organization of this partnership it became the leading law firm 
in North Carolina. It was employed in most of the great litigation 
of that period, both in the Federal and State courts. It was lead- 
ing counsel in establishing the validity of the lease of the North 
Carolina Railroad to the Richmond and Danville, and in defend- 
ing that company for changing the gauge, and it won the great 
fight that has proved of such advantage to the State and benefit 
to the people in the results that subsequently attended and sprang 
out of these matters. Judge Merrimon, being at the time in the 
United States Senate, was necessarily much absent, and the busi- 
ness of the firm devolved largely on Colonel Fuller, who attended 
the courts and tried the cases, the labor of preparing which fell 
chiefly to Captain Ashe. 

Colonel Fuller was a man of distinguished presence and fine 
address, affable in his manners and unusually courteous. He was 
a delightful conversationalist, and excelled in anecdote, of which 
he had an inexhaustible fund always ready for the entertainment 



THOMAS C. FULLER 283 

of his companions, and whether in the drawing-room or with his 
legal brethren at some fireside, he was ever the center of the group. 

In person he was of medium height, but rotund and with fine 
features that bespoke the benevolence which was a prominent trait 
of his character. He was always bland and gracious, thoughtful 
for the feelings of others, temperate in all things, never profane, 
calm and philosophical, and seeking to enjoy the blessings of life 
even as he enjoyed the morning sunshine, which seemed so har- 
monious with his disposition. His talents, his pleasantries and 
his kindliness made him a general favorite, and his friends were 
numerous. Indeed, no man drew his friends to him with a 
warmer attachment, for he was himself true and constant in his 
friendship ; and devoid of selfishness, he was never happier than 
when serving his friends. 

In religious faith he was a Presbyterian, and his walk in life 
was that of a Christian gentleman ; a man of the nicest sense of 
honor, generous, easily moved by the sufferings of others and 
tender with regard to the frailties of others. He was a thought- 
ful man, much given to reflection, fond of his home, where he 
invariably passed his evenings either in the company of friends 
or enjoying an entertaining author. 

He seldom delivered addresses on literary subjects; but the few 
he prepared were gems of thought. His style was clear and 
precise, ornate and elegant. No one excelled him in the choice 
selection of words or in the flow of his sentences as they expanded, 
bearing ennobling and elevating thoughts. Indeed, as an orator 
he was eloquent and captivating, and he ever carried the audience 
along with him to the conclusion he would reach. 

In politics he took a general interest, heightened at times by 
his purpose to aid some friend in achieving the object of his 
ambition ; but for himself he sought no political preferment. Still, 
he entered somewhat into the State canvasses, and usually delivered 
a few political addresses in each campaign, and he exerted a 
strong influence in the councils of the Democratic Party, both as 
to the adoption of measures and policies, on its legislation and 
on the selection of those who were to win political honors. A 



284 NORTH CAROLINA 

strong, forceful and tactful man, full of resources, and a great 
manager, he was ever a factor to be reckoned with, and generally 
he enjoyed the satisfaction of having his views to prevail. 

He was an unquestioned leader at the bar, and besides being a 
well-rounded lawyer, he was conspicuously superior in the trial 
of causes. With a logical as well as brilliant mind, few of his asso- 
ciates possessed the capacity of developing a case before the jury 
equally as well. Those who knew him best and practised longest 
with him declared that in this respect he manifested his greatest 
ability. But as an advocate he was superb, and laymen regarded 
him as greatest in this role. He played upon the human passions 
and human feelings with remarkable effect and unusual skill. 
With a few caustic sentences he would arouse indignation to 
the highest pitch against a cause or person that deserved it, and 
his excoriations and torrent of invective against a false witness 
were rarely equalled. And yet when the occasion required it he 
could melt his audience into tears by his tender pathos and the 
beauties of rhetoric. In examining a witness who was deviating 
from the truth, he was sometimes terrific, and he often put per- 
jurers on a veritable rack of torture. But as severe as he was 
in the examination, in his argument he was still more powerful; 
bold, aggressive and fearless in the conduct of his cases, he used 
all the powers of his brilliant mind to achieve success, and when 
it became necessary to denounce either party or witness, he was 
terrific in his denunciation. 

But in particular he was skillful in the management of the details 
of his case. It was one of his peculiarities that he made but few 
notes on the trial, no matter how protracted it became. A master 
of the principles of the law and conversant with the latest de- 
cisions, he knew well the merits and the weak points in his cases, 
and he seized on the leading points and presented what he called 
"the big equities" to the jury with a clearness and a force that 
was not excelled by any of his contemporaries. While employed 
in all the great civil litigation of his day, his reputation was 
greatest as a criminal lawyer. He never prosecuted a capital case. 
Money could not purchase his services to place life in jeopardy; 



THOMAS C. FULLER 285 

but he defended many, and threw his whole soul into the work 
of defense, and he was unusually successful. 

The partnership he formed at Raleigh was a delightful asso- 
ciation. It continued for some six years, and never was there 
a hasty or an impatient word uttered by either partner, and never 
was there any accounting of fees. As there was no apportion- 
ment of labor, so there was no strict apportionment of the common 
fund, to which all contributed by their best endeavors. In July, 
1879, however. Captain Ashe withdrew to enter the field of 
journalism, and Colonel Fuller and Judge Merrimon continued 
the business until later Judge Merrimon was appointed to the 
Supreme Bench, when Colonel Fuller associated himself with 
George H. Snow, under the name of Fuller & Snow. Congress 
having established the Court of Private Land Claims to pass 
upon titles based on Mexican grants in the territory acquired 
from Mexico, President Harrison in 1891 appointed Judge Fuller 
a justice of that court, whose jurisdiction was so high that appeals 
from it lay only to the Supreme Court of the United States. In 
this position Judge Fuller added to the fine reputation he had 
long enjoyed and took rank as one of the first jurists of the 
Union. His associates recognized his great ability, and his opin- 
ion had an influence not inferior to that of any other member of 
the court. The sessions were generally held at Santa Fe, and 
much of Judge Fuller's time was passed from home. But in the 
recess he had ample leisure, which he passed chiefly at the homes 
of his married children. He had the gratification of seeing his 
eldest son, Mr. W. W. Fuller, who had entered the profession, 
attain a high position as a lawyer, and his second son, Frank, 
was also fast following in his own footsteps, while his daughters 
were happily married, and he found the utmost satisfaction in 
the lives of his children. Eventually, after ten years of judicial 
experience. Judge Fuller fell into bad health, and passed away 
at Raleigh, greatly lamented throughout the entire State. 

On the Sth of November, 1857, he had married Miss Caroline 
Douglas Whitehead of Fayetteville, a lady of the sweetest char- 
acter, whose tenderness was in fine accord with the devotion and 



286 



NORTH CAROLINA 



affectionate disposition of her distinguished husband. Their 
married Hfe was blessed by the birth of eleven children, of whom 
six arrived at maturit)^ among them being the distinguished 
Williamson W. Fuller of New York and Frank L. Fuller and Jones 
Fuller of Durham, who worthily perpetuate the name of their 
honored father. 

6". A. Ashe. 





^.Br^- Aryr- 





DAVID MOFFATT FURCHES 

I HE subject of this sketch is one of the best- 
known and most highly respected of the State's 
citizens. But recently he has vacated the chief 
justice's seat on the Supreme Court after an 
official tenure marked by incidents beyond the 
common, but characterized throughout by un- 
flinching devotion to conviction, unbending integrity and a digni- 
fied bearing worthy the best traditions of the court. 

His has been distinctly a lawyer's life, varied at times by 
political struggles, in which, more from call than choice, he has 
been chosen to lead, as, for instance, in his canvass for Congress 
against Major Robbins and for governor in 1892. Since the day 
of his license, with the exception of his years upon the bench, he 
has been and yet continues in active practice. 

Never a brilliant advocate, yet always an impressive one, a 
careful student of his case, conservative as a counsellor, yet per- 
sistent in purpose when once committed to the fray, he enjoys 
in the sunset of life an ample competence as the result of industri- 
ous years, and what is far more valuable to a well-instructed 
ambition, the universal respect of his community and of his large 
acquaintance. 

Judge Furches is a native of that fine little county, unappreci- 
ated, we have sometimes thought, in the State's esteem, which 
bears the name of our greatest Revolutionary soldier, William 



288 NORTH CAROLINA 

Richardson Davie. He was bom April 21, 1832. His ancestry 
were of the sturdy farmer stock of Americans, from which have 
sprung a majority, perhaps, of the nation's governors in state and 
church. Stephen Lewis Furches, his father, occupied no higher 
official position than that of a county justice of the peace; but 
was a man of unbounded heart, going security for every friend 
and cheerfully sustaining the consequent embarrassment. 

His grandfather, Tobias Furches, was a Baptist preacher, a 
descendant of John Furches of Kent County, Delaware, the 
earliest known man of the name on this side of the water. The 
mother of Judge Furches was Polly Howell, a good country 
woman of uneventful life, given to the duties that lay right 
at hand, and finding in such, doubtless, a pleasure of more lasting 
nature than fashion affords its most loyal worshippers. The 
Union Academy in Davie County, then conducted by Major James 
H. Foote and Samuel O. Tatum, gave the future chief justice 
all the educational training he ever received at the hands of others. 
He was denied the advantages of the State's university, which 
many years later remembered him with the degree of LL.D. 

But his law training was of higher grade, that wonderful wizard 
in reasoning. Chief Justice Pearson, being his preceptor, and 
licensing him in the years 1856 and 1857. 

His earliest practice was at Mocksville, his county seat, where 
he became county attorney in the opening year, and where He con- 
tinued to live till 1866, when Statesville, Iredell County, became 
and has since continued his home. He was a member of the 
Andrew Johnston Constitutional Convention in 1865, and pro- 
visional district attorney in the same year. A Whig before the 
war, a consistent Republican since, Judge Furches has frequently 
been called on to lend his name to forlorn political hopes. Such 
was his canvass for Congress in 1872 and for governor in 1892. 
His party was a minority party, and desirous only of putting 
its best foot foremost. Yet he was ever loyal to the organization, 
and at one time was honored by it when success, after many years 
of adversity, perched on its banner. 

Unsuccessful along with Judge Buxton and Major W. A. 



DAVID MOFFATT FURCHES 289 

Guthrie when nominated for the Supreme Court in 1888, he was 
triumphantly elected to the same seat in 1894, having seen three 
years' service on the Superior Court as successor to Judge 
Mitchell by appointment of Governor Brogden. 

Judge Furches's opinions while on the Supreme Court are in 
general clear, simple and to the point, free from hedging and 
evasion and distinctly learned in what may be called "land law," 
a branch of practice in which he has had a large experience. 
They do not rise to the level of his great "Master," Pearson, for 
whom he entertains not alone respect, but deep and abiding 
affection as having been his earliest inspiration to a successful 
career, nor have they that incisive severance of Gordian knots 
which belonged to Reade's pen alone; but they are in every way 
meritorious, and some of them were rendered in the face of strong 
political bias clamoring in vain for a hearing from his honest 
pen. 

This is no fit place to enter upon the injustice, as his friends 
will ever regard it, of the celebrated impeachment of Chief Justice 
Furches and Associate Justice Douglas by the legislature of 1901. 
The gentlemen in question felt themselves to be victims of political 
persecution; but their ample vindication at the hands of a large 
majority of their political opponents should cause them and their 
friends to throw the mantle of charity over much that was said 
and done in that eventful winter. Suffice it in this connection to 
say that both these judges had concurred in rulings which gave 
offices to hold-over Democrats in the teeth of Republican legis- 
lation attempting their removal, and these rulings were in line 
with a long train of decisions almost historical in dignity so far 
as our State had made history in the matter. 

When at length "the boot was on the other leg," and a Republi- 
can official received the benefit of the ruling against the Demo- 
cratic legislation to oust him from a place on the Shell Com- 
mission, a partisan cry for vengeance on the judges arose, which 
resulted in the presentation of articles of impeachment. The basis 
of the action was of course somewhat altered from this state- 
ment, though its truth was conceded. It was presented to the 



290 NORTH CAROLINA 

public from this viewpoint, that the keepers of the State's purse 
had been distinctly commanded not to pay a certain salary, and 
that the court had awarded payment of this salary, and more- 
over enforced their decree by their process. The reply was 
simple — that if a man could not be divested of an office by legis- 
lation he could not be divested of its conceded earnings by the 
same legislation, and that when one asked for the rind the fruit 
went along with it — the nut with the shell, the incident with the 
grant, the milk with the cocoanut. 

Lieutenant Governor Turner, a townsman of the chief justice, 
presided over the trial with marked fairness and unruffled temper ; 
the Senate approached and handled the subject with that respect 
for personal rights which the average North Carolinian is careful 
in general to observe, and the end, plain from the time when 
outside public opinion made itself heard within the walls, was a 
complete and triumphant acquittal of the accused. Even the 
stoutest advocates of the impeachment, admitting that the essence 
of all crime is found in the intent, were puzzled to find any evi- 
dence of intent to do wrong on the part of these distinguished 
citizens, however great their error. 

The impeachment trial has been published in book form at the 
expense of the State, and a full summary of the eloquent speeches 
of counsel is therein preserved for the use of future historians, 
whose judgment upon the proceeding we will not venture to fore- 
stall. During the progress of the trial the townsmen of Judge 
Furches and his old friends of the bar, scattered throughout the 
State, gave such manifestations of their confidence in his judicial 
uprightness, both personally to him and also through the press, 
as tended greatly to the final vote of acquittal. 

Sorely smitten as he must have been by the original attack, 
this fact came as a great consolation, and is doubtless among the 
most pleasant memories of a long and active life. 

Judge Furches served as chief of the court from January S. 
1901, to January i, 1903, succeeding Chief Justice William T. 
Faircloth by appointment of Governor Daniel L. Russell. 

He has been twice married, first to Miss Eliza Bingham of 



DAVID MOFFATT FURCHES 291 

Davie County, while the present Mrs. Furches was Miss Lula 
Corpening of Statesville, North Carolina. By neither has be been 
blessed with children. 

Though his parents belonged to the Baptist Church, the judge 
is an attendant of the Episcopal Church. 

No secret order claims him as a member. In person the judge 
is of medium height and weight, of open and engaging counte- 
nance, and possessed of a vigorous constitution. His habits 
through life have been consistently temperate, and the sure re- 
ward has come in a healthful old age. At present he is the senior 
of the law firm of Furches, Coble & Nicholson at Statesville, a 
firm deservedly high in public favor and enjoying fine practice 
in that section of the State. 

A short biography of the subject of this sketch has appeared 
in the third volume of the Cyclopaedia of American Biographies ; 
but his has been a life affording little of startling incident to the 
reporter. 

Possessed of strict integrity and constant industry, with some 
special object in view; stimulated by contact with the gifted men 
of the Piedmont bar — those departed giants of the forum. Arm- 
field, Folk, Clement and others — he has steadily wended his way 
up from county attorney to the highest honor of his profession. 

In private life the Judge is fine company, delighting in reminis- 
cence and enjoying a good story. He is fond of his pipe and 
the daily paper, and gives to public events close attention, storing 
even the smallest facts in a most retentive memory. 

Residing in a community noted no less for its thrift than its 
culture, having the apparent prospect of useful years still un- 
counted, happy in his family relations, he almost realizes the 
picture Ben Jonson drew of Bacon entering upon his sixtieth 
year of age and first year as lord chancellor : 

"Whose even threads the Fates spin round and full 
Out of their choicest and their whitest wool." 

W. S. Pearson. 




CHRISTOPHER GALE 




fN a work by the English herald and gene- 
alogist, John Burke, entitled "History of the 
Commoners of Great Britain and Ireland," 
published in 1836, we find an account of the 
ancient Yorkshire family of Gale of Scruton 
Hall, and in this account is mentioned Chris- 
topher Gale, attorney-general and chief justice of the colony of 
North Carolina. 

Chief Justice Gale was born at York in 1680, and came to North 
Carolina about the year 1700. In 1703, or possibly earlier, he was 
made a judge of the General Court of the colony. Apparently 
he was in England in 1710, and returned with Lawson and the 
Palatines in that year. He sat in the Council as a deputy for one 
of the Lords Proprietors, and was also attorney-general. On the 
breaking out of the Indian War he was sent to Charleston for 
aid, and having the promise of help, he hurried back, but was 
captured by the French on the way, and it was several months 
before he returned to Carolina. On his return he was made 
colonel of the militia of Bath County, and later, the office of chief 
justice was conferred upon him. This office he held until 
1717, and then went to England, where he remained about five 
years. Upon returning to the colony, he resumed his office, being 
also collector of the "Port of Roanoke." In 1725, because of 
enmity with Governor Burrington, he again went to England to 



CHRISTOPHER GALE 293 

prefer charges against Governor Burrington, who had attacked 
his house and threatened his hfe. During this latter absence 
Burrington's Council declared that the office of chief justice had 
been vacated by Gale, and Thomas Pollock (son of President 
Thomas Pollock, then recently deceased) was made chief justice. 
His effort to have Burrington removed was successful, and Gale 
returned to Carolina, bringing an order for his reinstatement as 
chief justice, and he remained chief justice until Burrington 
again became governor in 173 1, when he was succeeded by 
William Smith. While chief justice in 1729, he was one of the 
commissioners appointed to run the boundary between Vir- 
ginia and North Carolina. This was the expedition commem- 
orated by Colonel William Byrd of Westover in his "History of 
the Dividing Line." In a religious way the chief justice also 
exercised a good influence. Being the son of a clergyman of the 
Church of England, he was brought up in that communion. He 
and his brother Edmund were vestrymen in North Carolina, and 
the Rev. Thomas Gale, another brother, was in holy orders. 

After Gale's employment as chief justice terminated in 1731, 
he continued collector of customs at Edenton, and held that office 
at the time of his death in the early spring of 1734. He married 
Mrs. Sarah Catherine Harvey, widow of Governor Harvey, and 
daughter of Benjamin Laker, a judge of the General Court in 
North Carolina. Among the children of Chief Justice Gale were 
Miles, Penelope (who married Chief Justice William Little) and 
Elizabeth (who married Henry Clayton, provost marshal of the 
province). 

Gale was an educated gentleman, and although fiercely de- 
nounced by the leaders of the Popular Party, whom he antago- 
nized, and afterward by Governor Everard, yet the passions of 
that era must be considered, and his friends declare that no man 
ever lived in the colony of North Carolina with a character more 
irreproachable than that of Chief Justice Gale. It has indeed 
been said that he "left a name that is never mentioned but with 
respect and admiration." 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 




JOHN HARVEY, Sr. 




[he origin of distinguished families is ever of 
interest, and this is particularly the case when 
the founder of the family is associated with the 
first beginning of the State. The early records 
of the Albemarle settlement have not been pre- 
served, and the story of the people who made 
the settlement in the wilderness is obscure. But among those 
who first cleared the forests of Albemarle was apparently John 
Harvey, that name a century later shining with great effulgence 
at the opening of the Revolutionary period. 

It was about 1658 when a party of adventurous spirits came 
from Virginia to the waters of Carolina, and understanding that 
that territory was beyond the limits of Virginia, they bought lands 
from the Indians and determined to make their homes in that 
summer land. The names of all are not preserved; but among 
them evidently were Dr. Thomas Relfe, Captain John Jenkins, 
Thomas Jarvis, Robert Peel, John Battle, Roger Williams, John 
Varnham and "Mr. John Harvey." George Durant was also of 
the company, and a little later George Catchmaid of Treslick, 
Gentleman, joined the settlers in their new home. But although 
they had bought land from the Indians, on the occasion of the 
visit of Governor Berkeley of Virginia to England in 1662, the 
king instructed him to require these settlers to take out grants 
for their lands from the government of Virginia, and certain of 



JOHN HARVEY, Sr. 295 

these grants have been preserved. From them it appears that 
George Catchmaid brought into the colony 30 persons; that Dr. 
Relfe brought in 15 persons; that Captain. John Jenkins brought 
in 14 persons, and that "Mr. John Harvey" brought in 17 per- 
sons; and in the grant to him Governor Berkeley dignifies him 
as "Mr. John Harvey." The location of one of the grants to 
Harvey, "lying on the river of Carolina," has ever since been 
known as "Harvey's Neck." 

There had been a family of the same name in Virginia at an 
earlier date; indeed, some twenty years before. Sir John Harvey 
was immediate predecessor of Sir William Berkeley as governor 
of Virginia. There is on record in Perquimans County a state- 
ment that "John Harvey, son of John Harvey and Mary, his wife, 
living at the Heath in Snitherfield Parish, Norwickshire, England, 
and Joanah Jenkins, relict of Hon. John Jenkins, were married 
by Hon. Anthony Sloccomb, April 13, 1682." This John was 
evidently not the son of the subject of this sketch; but it indicates 
that the Harveys were of Norwickshire, England. 

Speaking of Albemarle, Lawson says, "The settlement was 
made by several substantial planters from Virginia and other 
plantations ;" and "the fame of this new-discovered summer coun- 
try spread through the neighboring colonies, and in a few years 
drew a considerable number of families thereto." 

Of life in the colony there are but few glimpses to be obtained. 
A little light is thrown on the mode of living and habits of the 
settlers by the journals of Edmundson and Fox, the Quaker 
apostles, the former of whom mentions that he found only one 
Quaker in the settlement in 1672. 

During the disturbances that arose when the British Govern- 
ment first attempted to collect the export tax on tobacco shipped 
to the Northern colonies, Harvey seems to have been quiet and 
to have maintained himself free from entanglements. During 
that period Jenkins became governor, and to succeed him Sothel 
was sent from England; but on his voyage Sothel was captured 
by the Algerine pirates, and the Lords Proprietors selected as the 
best man to compose the dififerences among the factions of Albe- 



296 NORTH CAROLINA 

marie John Harvey, and commissioned him in 1679 president of 
the Council to conduct the administration until the arrival of 
Sothel. Harvey died, however, within a few months after re- 
ceiving his commission, and although his administration was suc- 
cessfully begun, it was cut short by his untimely death. 

In 1680 Thomas Harvey was a member of the grand jury, and 
in 1684 Thomas Harvey applied for an appraisal of the property 
of the estate of Hon. John Jenkins, whose widow John Harvey, 
doubtless his kinsman, had married two years earlier. This 
Thomas Harvey mentions in his will that he was executor of 
Governor John Harvey, and from this circumstance one may sur- 
mise that he was his son. He himself in 1694 was appointed 
deputy governor of the colony, and wisely administered its affairs, 
with some slight interruptions, until his death in 1699. Governor 
Thomas Harvey married Sarah Laker, daughter of Benjamin 
Laker of Perquimans County. After the death of her husband, 
Mrs. Harvey married Christopher Gale, who appeared in the 
colony about that time. Governor Thomas Harvey and Sarah 
Laker had, among others, a son Thomas, who became the ancestor 
of the patriot, John Harvey, of the Revolution. For many of the 
facts contained in this sketch, as well as many other statements in 
other sketches, the editor makes his acknowledgment to the very 
valuable publication of J. R. B. Hathaway, known as "The North 
Carolina Historical and Genealogical Register." 

5. A. Ashe. 






RICHARD HENDERSON 

?HOUGH the colony of Transylvania disap- 
peared from the map and passed into the realm 
of history a few years after its birth, the name 
of its founder and president, Judge Richard 
Henderson, should not be forgotten, and so we 
begin this sketch by telling something of his 
earlier life and services in North Carolina. Judge Henderson was 
a native of Hanover County, Virginia, born April 20, 1735; and 
when a child under ten years of age, was brought to Granville 
County, North Carolina, by his father, Samuel Henderson, a 
gentleman of Scotch ancestry, but a native of Virginia, where 
he was born on the 17th of March, 1700. The mother of Judge 
Henderson was Elizabeth Williams, who came of Welsh ancestry. 
After Samuel Henderson's removal to North Carolina, he 
became high sheriff of the county of Granville, and his son Rich- 
ard served as one of his deputies. Later studying law, the younger 
Henderson became king's deputy attorney for his county. On the 
1st of March, 1769, Richard Henderson was appointed associate 
judge of the Superior Court (then the supreme legal tribunal of 
the colony) by Governor Tryon. In mentioning this appointment 
to the authorities in England, Tryon refers to Henderson as "a 
gentleman of candor and ability, born in Virginia and living in 
Hillsboro, where he is highly esteemed." 

During the insurrection of the Regulators, Judge Henderson 



298 NORTH CAROLINA 

was driven from the bench when holding court at Hillsboro in 
September, 1770, and his home in Granville County was burned 
by the insurgents in November of the same year. After the 
Regulators had been defeated and dispersed by Tryon's army at 
the battle of Alamance, on May 16, 1771, quiet and order were 
in some degree restored, and though the records of the trial have 
been lost, it is probable that Judge Henderson presided with his 
associates. Chief Justice jMartin Howard and Judge Maurice 
Moore, when the Regulators were tried for treason. At this trial 
12 were condemned to death and 6 executed, the other 6 being 
pardoned. About the time of the beginning of the Revolution 
(in which he became an active patriot), Judge Henderson and 
some adventurous associates conceived the idea of founding a new 
commonwealth, and shortly thereafter there came into existence 
the short-lived colony of Transylvania. This land was purchased 
by a treaty with the Indians on March 17, 1775, which treaty 
was afterward annulled by the authorities of Virginia and North 
Carolina. Transylvania lay chiefly in what is now Kentucky, and 
part was in the present bounds of Tennessee. The former was 
claimed by Virginia and the latter by North Carolina. Judge 
Henderson was elected president of the new colony on Septem- 
ber 25, 177s, and a government was duly organized, which at 
once petitioned to be allowed representation in the Continental 
Congress at Philadelphia, James Hogg being delegated to present 
the petition. While sounding the members of Congress on the 
subject of recognition, Mr. Hogg interviewed the New England 
leaders, John and Samuel Adams. To these statesmen the action 
of Transylvania was too forward a step toward independence, 
and they expressed unwillingness to retard reconciliation with 
Great Britain by Congress "taking under its protection a body 
of people who had acted in defiance of the king's proclamations." 
They added: "This will be looked on as a confirmation of that 
independent spirit with which we are daily reproached." Though 
Hogg assured the Messrs. Adams that the "Transylvanians in- 
tended to acknowledge the king's sovereignty whenever he should 
think them worthy of his regard," recognition was not accorded 



RICHARD HENDERSON 299 

the new colony, and it passed out of existence in a few years ; but 
during its brief existence no part of America was more true to the 
cause of the colonies. The gentlemen who were proprietors of 
the Transylvania colony were at a later date given an immense 
grant of land to repay them for the trouble and expense they had 
incurred in making the new settlement. 

In 1778 Judge Henderson was elected a member of the North 
Carolina Council of State, and was again elected to the same office 
in 1782. On August 14, 1778, the independent government elected 
him to the old office of judge, which he had held before the war, 
but this honor he declined. In 1779 he served as one of the com- 
missioners to settle the disputed boundary between Virginia and 
North Carolina. At its session of 1781 he represented Granville 
County in the North Carolina House of Commons, and this was 
probably his last public service. He died in what is now Vance, 
then a part of Granville County, on January 30, 1785. 

Judge Henderson and members of his family have both counties 
and towns in the three States of North Carolina, Tennessee and 
Kentucky named in their honor. The wife of Judge Henderson 
was Elizabeth Keeling, a step-daughter of Judge Williams. From 
this union have sprung many men of note in North Carolina. 
Chief Justice Leonard Henderson and his no less gifted brother, 
Archibald Henderson, were children of Judge Henderson. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 






JOHN STEELE HENDERSON 

^2^i^^)^^i^M0NG all those in North Carolina who can 
vSj JKVV/'^g i ^ ^t contemplate with satisfaction the public services 
of their ancestors, there are but few so favored 
by fortune that they can find more pleasure in 
yi«^^^^^5^aV such a review than John Steele Henderson of 
p^^^^^^^^fii^ Salisbury. Every line through which he is de- 
scended is remarkable for public virtue and private worth. 

Thomas Henderson, the first of the name to come to America, 
was one of the earliest colonists who settled Jamestown. One 
of his descendants, Samuel Henderson, for many years high 
sheriff for Granville County, was a pioneer farmer in Granville 
County in 1743; one of his sons, Major Pleasant Henderson, 
attained the great age of eighty-six years, and for three-quarters 
of a century he was held in high esteem by all who knew him ; 
another was Richard Henderson, who was a judge during the 
colonial period; and later, being a man of great enterprise, he 
organized the Transylvania Company, that purchased from the 
Indians a large part of the present States of Kentucky and Ten- 
nessee, and as president of it made the first settlement in Kentucky, 
Daniel Boone being one of his employees to explore the terri- 
tory. Another son, William, commanded the South Carolina 
troops at the battle of Eutaw Springs, and served in the Revo- 
lutionary War with great ability and with conspicuous 
gallantry. 




J 6:,E' G T-1^'//:^-r,^ 3 ^r^ .Vh^ 




Vy'M^X^-^ /L^ 




JOHN STEELE HENDERSON 301 

Leonard Henderson, the distinguished chief justice, was one 
of Richard Henderson's sons, and Archibald Henderson another. 
The latter was a member of the sixth and seventh Congresses of 
the United States, and ranked among the ablest lawyers in those 
bodies. Judge Murphey, in the eulogy he pronounced upon him 
after his death, declared that he was the most perfect model of a 
lawyer the bar of North Carolina ever produced. His son Archi- 
bald, the second of that name, who married Miss Mary Steele 
Ferrand, and who was the father of the subject of this sketch, was 
a member of the Council of State during the administration of 
Governor Reid and of Governor Bragg. He was a man of fine 
intelligence, well versed in literature, a cultivated gentleman, and 
one of the best informed and most influential public men of the 
State. 

As illustrious as was Mr. Henderson's descent on the side of 
his father, his mother's family was no less distinguished for 
patriotism and superior excellence. He is a descendant of Moses 
Alexander and grandson of Sarah Alexander, a sister of Nathaniel 
Alexander, a soldier of the Revolution and patriot, member of 
Congress and governor of the State ; and a great-grandson of 
William Ferrand and Maiy Williams, whose brother, Benjamin 
Williams, was a Revolutionary hero, member of Congress, who, 
having served three terms as governor, after the constitutional 
period had expired, was again called from his retirement to that 
high position. He is also a descendant of General John Steele, a 
member of the first and second Congresses, a personal friend of 
Washington and Jefferson, and likewise a descendant of Mrs. 
Elizabeth Steele, who, when General Greene, in command of the 
Continental army, hard pressed by Cornwallis, was at Salisbury 
in sore straits for money, presented him with two bags of specie — 
all she had. Never could relief have come at a more opportune 
moment, and never was a woman's heart more delighted at being 
able to make such a sacrifice for her suffering country. 

And among Mr. Henderson's ancestors also were Dr. Stephen 
Lee Ferrand and his wife, Margaret Steele — names treasured for 
intelligence and virtue among their posterity. 



302 NORTH CAROLINA 

All these streams of greatness and of high characteristics and 
noble purposes unite in the person of John Steele Henderson, 
whose exemplary course in life has been worthy of his inheritance. 
Raised in an atmosphere of patriotism, and in a circle distin- 
guished for its cultivation, he has won his own laurels and wears 
them admirably. 

Born at his father's home in Salisbury on the 6th day of Janu- 
ary, 1846, his boyhood days were passed measurably on the farm, 
where he picked cotton and planted corn and did other light 
farm work, for which his father allowed him proper compensa- 
tion ; and habits of order, method and industry were inculcated 
from his early years. He was a pupil of Dr. Alexander Wilson's 
famous school at Melville, Alamance County, for more than three 
years, and when sixteen years of age entered the University of 
North Carolina. The demand for recruits to fill Lee's depleted 
ranks, however, led to the interruption of his studies. His elder 
brother. Captain Leonard Alexander Henderson, fell at Cold 
Harbor on June i, 1864, while in command of the Eighth Regi- 
ment, leading a desperate charge; and five months later the 
younger brother, at the age of eighteen, enlisted as a private in 
Company B, Tenth Regiment, North Carolina troops, and hurried 
to the field. After the army was disbanded he returned home, and 
in January, 1866, began the study of the law at Judge Pearson's 
Law School. Five months later he obtained his first license, and 
although not of age, opened a law office, but was soon elected 
register of deeds for Rowan County, an office he held until Sep- 
tember, 1868, when he declined a nomination in order to devote 
himself to his profession. In 1867 he had obtained his license to 
practice in the Superior Courts, and he now devoted himself to 
his professional work. In 1871, at an election for members of 
a constitutional convention, he was chosen a delegate for Rowan 
County, but the people of the State voted against the proposed 
convention, and it was not held. He declined nominations to the 
General Assembly in 1872 and in 1874, but in 1875 he was elected 
a delegate to the constitutional convention, and became a very 
active, prudent and sagacious member of that body. He was a 



JOHN STEELE HENDERSON 303 

member of the next General Assembly that put into operation the 
changes made in the constitution ; and the next session he was 
returned to the State Senate, and established himself as a superior 
man in the councils of his party. In 1880 he was elected by the 
State convention a delegate at large to the national convention, 
and later he participated extensively in the Presidential cam- 
paign. As distinguished as Mr. Henderson is for ability and 
learning, he is still more noted in public life for his laborious 
application. He masters the smallest details of every question 
he is called on to explore. Whether in the profession of the law 
or in the domain of politics, he is learned and thorough. In this 
regard he has long enjoyed a reputation that few lawyers and 
politicians ever attain. So when the laws of the State were to be 
codified in 1881, he was naturally selected as one of the Code Com- 
mission, along with the eminent W. T. Dortch and the learned 
John Manning, professor of law at the University. The satis- 
factory execution of that important work is largely to be attributed 
to the industry and zeal of Mr. Henderson, and so well was it 
done that twenty years elapsed before a revisal was ordered by the 
legislature. 

Shortly after the completion of that work, Mr. Henderson 
entered on a Congressional career that lasted for five terms, during 
which he became the most capable, active and useful representa- 
tive the State has had in Congress since the war. He was selected 
as a member of the Judiciary Committee and chairman of the 
Committee on Post-offices and Post-roads ; and but few members 
more thoroughly commanded the esteem and respect of the House. 
His speeches always attracted attention ; and those on tariff reform 
and the internal revenue system were largely circulated as cam- 
paign documents throughout the State. He was a member of the 
State Senate in 1901 and 1903. Mr. Henderson worked so faith- 
fully and successfully during these two sessions of the Senate, 
and his skill and capacity as a legislator were so notable, that 
one of the most distinguished representatives who was serving 
in the other branch of the General Assembly during the session 
of 1903 frequently remarked that Mr. Henderson was such an 



304 NORTH CAROLINA 

excellent legislator that he should be required to serve the State 
in a legislative capacity as long as he lived. 

Mr. Henderson is peculiarly gifted as a legislator. He has been 
prominent as a leader in every legislative body of which he has 
been a member. He has a genius for legislation, and is thoroughly 
familiar with parliamentary law, and his courtesy and tact are 
such that he rarely ever fails to secure approval for measures 
which he advocates. He is an able, skilful and trained parlia- 
mentarian and debater ; and his knowledge of public affairs is not 
excelled by any one of his generation; and he has rendered his 
country conspicuous and excellent service. 

As a public speaker he has never failed to be equal to any and 
every occasion, and no political adversary ever got the better of 
him in debate. His political speeches are so ably and thoroughly 
prepared, and the proper subjects for discussion are so logically 
and exhaustively treated, that they are always looked forward 
to as sounding the keynote of every campaign ; and there are some 
of the most eloquent and distinguished campaigners in the State 
who have made it a rule to hear Mr. Henderson on the stump 
as early as possible in a campaign in order to note down for use 
by themselves in the same campaign the varied, luminous and in- 
structive information contained in his speeches. Mr. Henderson 
is not particularly noted for his eloquence or oratory, but no public 
man in the State speaks to the people more clearly or efifectively, 
and none uses language more chaste, convincing and impressive. 
The people are glad and anxious to hear him, and everything he 
says makes a deep impression upon them. They know he is telling 
them what he believes to be true, even when he fails to convince 
them. In 1894, when it was running against the popular current 
to say it, he told the people from every stump in his Congressional 
district that there was no person then born who would ever live 
to see a law passed by Congress for the free and unlimited coinage 
of silver. These words made a lasting impression upon all who 
heard him, and are now remembered to his credit, although at 
the time they were not received with favor by at least half of his 
hearers. 



JOHN STEELE HENDERSON 305 

In June, 1890, the degree of Doctor of Laws was conferred on 
him by Trinity College of this State. 

Able, accurate, learned and laborious, Mr. Henderson would 
in any event have made his impression on the public mind; but 
he has exerted an influence beyond this, because of the purity 
of his character and the candor with which he has ever avowed 
his convictions. In 1890, when the Farmers' Alliance had perme- 
ated itself through the warp and woof of the Democratic Party, 
and controlled that organization thoroughly, and had established 
the advocacy of what is called the sub-treasury measure as a tegt 
of fealty to popular interests, there were but a few of the old guard 
who had the hardihood to withstand it. Nearly every man in 
public life in the State gave in his adherence ; but Mr. Henderson 
boldly declared the measure unconstitutional as well as inexpedi- 
ent and impracticable, and entered into a campaign for re-election 
on that platform. As strong as the Alliance opposition to him 
was, the respect and confidence of his people were stronger. He 
beat down all opposition and won the victory by a majority of 
more than 4000. His success was an inspiration, and largely 
strengthened the hands of those who were seeking to hold the 
Democratic Party to its old landmarks. 

His strict adherence to his personal convictions and correspond- 
ing disinclination to curry popular favor by an abdication of his 
own sense of right, justice and propriety have perhaps interfered 
with his being called to fill still higher positions resting on popular 
favor ; but his life has been one of great usefulness and influence, 
and his career entitles him to rank as one of the most capable and 
interesting of the public men of the State. 

Mr. Henderson has been very influential in bringing capital 
to the State and in building up the city in which he lives. Through 
his personal influence and assistance the Southern Railway Com- 
pany was enabled to establish its shops at Spencer. He secured 
the lands required by the company for that purpose in 1896 before 
the public was aware of what was in contemplation. Now Spencer 
is a large and flourishing town, and seems destined to become 
quite a city. Every acre of land, amounting to some 12,000 acres, 



3o6 NORTH CAROLINA 

was purchased by him for the proposed development of the water- 
power of the Yadkin River, near "The Narrows," and for gold 
mining and manufacturing purposes. The lands so purchased 
are situated in the counties of Rowan, Cabarrus, Stanly, Mont- 
gomery and Davidson. The Whitney Company, which now owns 
these lands, is also interesed in gold mining, and has already 
spent some millions of dollars in efforts to develop its properties, 
and expects to spend many millions more. If the plans of those 
who control this company are carried forward to completion, the 
twin cities of Salisbury and Spencer will be before many years 
a large and flourishing metropolis, and the counties above named 
and many others adjoining will vastly increase in population and 
wealth. Mr. Henderson has been made the attorney of this com- 
pany and of the one which preceded it ever since the year 1898, 
when the great project first began to assume shape. The capital- 
ists who are entitled to the credit for this great work are Messrs. 
George I. Whitney, Francis L. Stephenson and H. L. W. Hyde 
of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, and Egbert B. C. Hambley of 
Salisbury. 

Mr. Henderson has been a member of the Board of Aldermen 
of the city of Salisbury, chairman of the Rowan County Board 
of Education, and a member of the Salisbury Graded Schools 
Committee. He takes great interest in education, and for many 
years, as one of the Committee of Graded Schools, has helped to 
make the Salisbury public schools the equal of those of any other 
town or city in the State. At this time he is both a member of the 
County Board of Education and of said School Committee. He 
also served for three years on the Board of Water Commissioners 
for the city of Salisbury, and during that period aided in giving 
to Salisbury one of the best water and sewerage systems in the 
State. 

In 1877 Mr. Henderson was elected director of the Western 
North Carolina Railroad Company, and served as such until 1880, 
when the road was sold by the State. He co-operated in the com- 
pletion of that great railroad, and favored its sale. In June, 1884, 
he was elected presiding justice of the Inferior Court of Rowan 



JOHN STEELE HENDERSON 307 

County. He has been for twenty years a director of the Yadkin 
Railroad Company. 

A man largely immersed in business, Mr. Henderson has no 
special fondness for sports, but contents himself with such exer- 
cise as walking to and from his office, an average of three miles 
a day, which he has found beneficial to his health. 

On the 30th of September, 1874, Mr. Henderson married Miss 
Elizabeth Brownrigg Cain, granddaughter of Hon. John L. Bailey 
of Asheville, by whom he has had seven children, four of whom 
still survive. These are Elizabeth Brownrigg Henderson, Archi- 
bald Henderson, now associate professor of mathematics at the 
University of North Carolina ; John Steele Henderson, Jr., who is 
an electrical engineer, and is in the employ of the Westinghouse 
Company of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania ; and Mary Ferrand Hender- 
son. Archibald Henderson is married to Miss Mary Curtis 
Bynum, daughter of Rev. William Shipp Bynum, deceased, and 
granddaughter of Hon. William P. Bynum, late a member of the 
Supreme Court of North Carolina, and also granddaughter of the 
late Rev. Moses A. Curtis of Hillsboro. Archibald and his wife 
have one daughter, named Mary Curtis. Mr. Henderson's chil- 
dren are all highly intellectual and literary. 

The church relations of his family are with the Protestant 
Episcopal Church, of which Mr. Henderson has long been an 
earnest member; and in 1880 and 1883 he was a deputy to the 
general triennial convention of that church. The salutary influ- 
ences of his church relations have been manifested throughout his 
career, for he has sought to live up to the teaching of his early 
catechism — to do his full duty in the station of life in which it 
has pleased his Maker to place him, and then to let the result take 
care of itself. He has not been anxious about what was to take 
place, but having done his best in the way of work and duty, he 
has abided the issue with a calm philosophy. 

To such a one the influences of home and home life have been 
of the first importance ; and this, reinforced by the companionship 
of good men and the study of good books and of contact with 
active men of business, developed those characteristics that have 



3o8 



NORTH CAROLINA 



led to his success. Reviewing his own career, he has stated that 
the best advice he can give to a young man is to be careful to form 
correct opinions and to strive to have a right judgment in all 
things; and that when the plans and opinions of a young man 
have been deliberately chosen, he must adhere to them with a 
determination and resolution that will not recognize failure to be 
possible ; and the rule of his life should always be to be faithful 
to his conscientious convictions and to the principles of honor, 
uprightness and truth. 

S. A. Ashe. 





£:'r,j bj, £•. a W'f/'^.a-Tis s3j-^ /\fy 







ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 




[HE most distinguished soldier of North Caro- 
Hna, Robert Frederick Hoke, is a native of 
Lincolnton, wliere he was born on the 27th day 
of May, 1837. His ancestry was such as has 
been most productive of men with those char- 
acteristics that have led to intelligent, persistent 
and courageous action, resulting in distinction in the various walks 
of life. The first of his name to come to America was a Lutheran 
minister, William Hoke, of Alsace or Lorraine, who was among 
the first settlers of York, Pennsylvania, from whom has sprung 
many descendants of highly respectable character, among them a 
considerable number who have attained prominence in their re- 
spective communities. Some years before the Revolution, Mrs. 
Hoke, a widow, with a family consisting of several sons, came 
from Pennsylvania and settled in what is now Lincoln County. 
There her son, John Hoke, associated with a neighbor, Mr. 
Michael Schenck, erected the first cotton mill built south of the 
Potomac, and operated it very successfully, and it was continued 
in operation by the family until the Civil War. He married Miss 
Quickie of Lincoln County, and their son Michael, the father of 
the subject of this sketch, was born in 1810. He was a man of 
fine attainments and captivating address, and he was so power- 
ful in public debate that his oratorical powers were regarded 
by his contemporaries as extraordinary. He was educated at 



310 NORTH CAROLINA 

Captain Partridge's Military Academy in Connecticut, then in 
high repute; studied law under Judge Tucker in Virginia, and 
completed his course with Hon. R. H. Burton of Lincolnton, 
whose daughter Frances he married. His ease of manner, bril- 
liancy of oratory and professional acquirements early brought 
him an extensive practice, and won for him high rank among the 
foremost men of the State. From 1834 to 1842 he represented 
his county in the legislature, and in 1844, at a meeting of his 
Democratic friends at the State capital, he was selected to make 
the canvass of the State for governor. Governor Morehead, a 
Whig, had at the previous election been chosen governor by a 
large majority, and the distinguished and masterful William A. 
Graham was then the Whig candidate, and the selection of 
Colonel Hoke to make the contest with Governor Graham attests 
the high opinion entertained of his abilities by his contemporaries. 
He made one of the most remarkable campaigns ever known in 
North Carolina, and reduced the Whig majority from about 15,000 
to some 2000. But his unremitting efforts were disastrous to his 
health. On September 9, 1844, within a month after the election, 
he died in Charlotte from fever and prostration, and the termi- 
nation of his brilliant career was universally lamented by the 
citizens of the State without regard to party affiliations. His 
wife, Frances Burton, was a daughter of Colonel Robert H. 
Burton, a distinguished lawyer and son of Colonel Robert Burton 
of Granville County, who had married Miss Williams, a daughter 
of Judge John Williams. Judge Williams was, at the session 
of April, 1778, unanimously chosen speaker of the House of 
Commons, and at the same session he was elected a member of 
the Continental Congress ; but a vacancy occurring on the 
bench, he was at the next session elected Supreme Court judge, 
and was one of the three judges who, in May, 1786, first held an 
act of the legislature unconstitutional, setting an important prece- 
dent, which has since been followed in all the States in the Union. 
Robert H. Burton and his brother Alfred, sons of Colonel Robert 
Burton, were educated at the University of North Carolina, and 
moved from Granville County to Lincoln, where they practiced 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 311 

law, and there they married sisters, daughters of Mr. John Fulen- 
wider. Mr. Fulenwider was an educated mining engineer, who 
came to North CaroHna from Wales, and, having married Miss 
Ellis, an aunt of Governor Ellis, he located in Lincoln County, 
and there began the development of the iron industry, erecting 
furnaces and rolling mills, the first built at the South, which sup- 
plied iron not only to that section, but also to Tennessee and other 
distant communities. He made and operated the first nail ma- 
chine ever used in America, and at his foundries, during the 
War of 1812, cannon-balls were cast for the use of the Gov- 
ernment. It was from such an ancestry that General Hoke 
sprung ; men of high intelHgence, well educated ; men of wealth, 
trained to affairs ; practical men, building and operating 
cotton factories and iron mills and managing successfully large 
properties. 

At the time of the death of Colonel Michael Hoke, his son, 
Robert Frederick, the subject of this sketch, was only seven years 
of age, but the father's place was well supplied by the mother, 
who was a woman of strong character, inheriting intellect from 
both her parents and singularly gifted in mental endowments. 
Under her direction the education of her children was admirably 
conducted; and after a preparatory course at Lincolnton, the 
subject of this sketch was entered by her at the Kentucky Mili- 
tary Academy, near Frankfort, an institution of high grade, whose 
professors were all graduates of West Point, and where the dis- 
cipline and course of study were similar to those at West Point. 
Here particular attention was paid to mathematics and engineer- 
ing, for which young Hoke had a fondness, and in which he 
excelled. But he did not remain to graduate, for, leaving the 
institution in 1853, at the age of seventeen, he returned home, and, 
being the oldest son of his mother, he conducted her business, 
and eventually occupied the position as head of the family. He 
entered into business in connection with the manufactures with 
which his family interests were identified, including a cotton mill, 
paper mill, the manufacture of iron and of linseed oil and cotton- 
seed oil, the cotton-seed oil mill being the first ever established; 



312 NORTH CAROLINA 

and he continued industriously employed in these operations until 
the war began in 1861. He then entered upon a career for which 
he was peculiarly fitted both by education, talent and character. 
He connected himself with a Lincoln company, the Southern Stars, 
which became Company K of the Bethel Regiment ; and, as second 
lieutenant, he participated in the baptism of blood at Bethel, and 
Colonel D. H. Hill, in his official report of that battle, commended 
him "for his great zeal, energy and judgment as an engineer 
officer on various occasions." On September 3d, upon the pro- 
motion of Colonel Hill to be brigadier-general, Lieutenant Hoke 
was elected to be major of the regiment, and when the regiment 
was disbanded he was appointed major of the Thirty-third Regi- 
ment, of which Colonel Branch was the colonel ; and upon 
Branch's promotion in January, 1862, Avery became colonel and 
Hoke lieutenant-colonel of the regiment, which was then stationed 
near New-Bern, to aid in the defence of that city. 

On the 14th of March, 1862, General Burnside's forces made 
the expected attack, and, breaking through the line of defense, 
struck the Thirty-third Regiment on its left, taking Colonel Avery 
prisoner, while Lieutenant-Colonel Hoke, on the right of the 
regiment, succeeded in extricating it, and saved it from capture, 
and, by making a great detour, brought it safely to Kinston, thus 
beginning his military career as regimental commander with an 
exploit that redounded to his high credit. 

Colonel Avery being captured. Colonel Hoke commanded the 
regiment in the battles around Richmond, and participated in the 
battles of Hanover Court-house, Mechanicsville, Gaines's Mills, 
Frazier's Farm and Malvern Hill, and later at Cedar Run and 
Second Manassas, where the Thirty-third, under Colonel Hoke, 
fought with great bravery and desperation, and gained particular 
encomiums, as well as at Sharpsburg. After the battle of Sharps- 
burg, Colonel Avery returned to the command, and Colonel Hoke, 
who had been commissioned as full colonel early in August, was 
assigned to the command of the Twenty-first North Carolina 
Regiment, then in Trimble's Brigade; and on the 13th of Decem- 
ber, at the battle of Fredericksburg, he was in command of the 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 313 

brigade, which was posted in the second Hne. Gregg's Brigade, 
which was stationed on the first Hne in Hoke's front, was over- 
whelmed by the Federal assault, General Gregg himself being 
killed, the works taken and the brigade captured. Without hesi- 
tation, and without waiting for orders, Colonel Hoke moved his 
brigade forward, restored the line and recaptured Gregg's Bri- 
gade, and captured the Federal force who occupied the works, 
Jackson's Pennsylvania troops. General Jackson himself being 
killed — a brilliant feat, that at once won him promotion, and a 
brigade was formed for him, consisting of the Sixth, Twenty- 
first, Fifty-seventh and Fifty-fourth North Carolina regiments, 
and with this brigade he served with General Lee during the 
winters of 1862 and 1863. It was at this time that an incident 
occurred which well illustrates General Hoke's care for his men, 
his thoughtfulness and capacity. The supply of soap was limited, 
and but little could be had for the army. General Hoke detailed 
some men, and sent them to Lincoln County to obtain the neces- 
sary pots and utensils ; and he converted the dead animals in the 
vicinity of his camp into soap, making even more of that desirable 
article than his brigade needed. One day a Texas general, observ- 
ing the quantity of soap at Hoke's camp, complained to General 
Lee of the partiality of the authorities, and insisted that his men 
should be supplied ; whereupon General Lee sent for General Hoke 
to inquire about the matter. General Hoke merely requested 
General Lee to ride over with him to his camp, and, getting there, 
told him that he not only had plenty of soap for his own command, 
but could send him wagon loads for other brigades, and showed 
him where and how he got it. General Lee was delighted, and, 
returning to his tent, sent for the complaining general and directed 
him to go to Hoke's headquarters and ascertain where the soap 
came from. General Hoke early gained in a pre-eminent degree 
the confidence of his men, and was trusted and idolized by them, 
and they knew that he in turn trusted them. His appearance in 
battle always inspired the greatest confidence and enthusiasm. 
Under his leadership his men felt that they could never fail. At 
the battle of Chancellorsville, Hoke was placed near the same 



314 NORTH CAROLINA 

position where he won his stars the year before, and Sedgwick 
having advanced and captured Marye's Heights, where there had 
been such terrible carnage the previous December, Hoke moved 
from his position below Deep Run, and, after a desperate conflict, 
the Federal forces were hurled back, and the next morning they 
retired across the Rappahannock ; but in that engagement General 
Hoke unfortunately received a severe wound in the shoulder, 
which for some months incapacitated him for active service. It 
thus happened that he was not with General Lee in the Pennsyl- 
vania campaign, but he was able to resume command of his 
brigade soon after its return to Virginia. 

The condition of political affairs in North Carolina, where the 
disaffected were loud in their complaints, made it particularly 
desirable that endeavors should be made to drive the enemy from 
the eastern part of the State, and in January, 1864, Hoke's Brigade 
and other troops were sent to North Carolina, where General 
Pickett was in command, for the purpose of capturing New-Bern. 
In conformity with a part of the plan of General Pickett, Hoke, 
with his brigade, after a brisk skirmish on February ist, drove 
in the enemy's outpost at Batchelder's Creek, crossed the creek 
and advanced upon the town, reaching its immediate vicinity. 
General Pickett was present in command, and although the 
batteries of the Federal works opened hotly upon him, no assault 
was ordered. General Pickett in his report says : "There was 
unfortunately no co-operation, the other parties having failed to 
attack, and I found we were making the fight single-handed." 
After waiting a day for the co-operating forces to gain the 
position they were to have reached. General Pickett, much dis- 
appointed, withdrew General Hoke's Brigade, and the movement 
failed. Colonel John Taylor Wood, a grandson of General 
Zachary Taylor, the distinguished and intrepid navy officer on 
the President's staff, to whom had been assigned the duty of 
attacking the gunboats, was largely successful; and upon his 
return to Richmond he reported to the President that had the 
expedition been under the command of General Hoke it would 
have succeeded. 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 315 

Hoke's approach had been so rapid that as he and a bevy of 
officers were in advance on the road, a Federal courier galloped 
unsuspectingly right up to them, and, when he saw his error, he 
hastily put a piece of paper in his mouth. Hoke's aide instantly 
put a pistol at his head, saying: "If you swallow that I will kill 
you." The courier spat it out. Smoothing the despatch out and 
reading it, information was gained that a regiment and four pieces 
of artillery were being sent to a certain point. Hoke at once 
despatched a force and captured the entire Federal detachment. 
The regiment proved to be composed of deserters from the Con- 
federate ranks, and when that fact was discovered at Kinston, 
by direction of General Pickett, they were tried by court martial 
and many of them were executed. 

The desirability of striking a blow in Eastern Carolina still 
continuing, a month later the President proposed to make another 
effort in that direction, and he selected General Hoke for the com- 
mand, because he knew his "energy and activity." His command, 
consisting of Kemper's Brigade, Ransom's Brigade and his own, 
assisted by the ram Albemarle, then fortunately about completed, 
assailed the Federal troops at Plymouth and gained a brilliant 
victory, capturing the entire Federal force at that point. So im- 
portant was this achievement that President Davis telegraphed 
to General Hoke his promotion to major-general, the only pro- 
motion made directly by President Davis on the field of battle 
during the war; and the State legislature and Congress, then in 
session, passed resolutions tendering thanks to General Hoke and 
the officers and men under him for the brilliant and important 
victory. Hurrying from Plymouth, General Hoke speedily cap- 
tured Washington, where he waited several days, expecting to be 
joined by the ram Albemarle, preparatory to making an attack on 
New-Bern. But as the Albemarle steamed out on her way to the 
Pamlico, the Federal flotilla surrounded her, and although they 
did not damage her hull, they so riddled the smokestack as to 
destroy the draft of her furnace and prevent her from proceeding. 
Disappointed at the delay of the ram, but determined to wait no 
longer, Hoke crossed the Tar at Greenville and the Trent at 



3i6 NORTH CAROLINA 

Trenton, and, passing to the south of New-Bern, he approached 
the town from the east, and was on the point of making an attack 
when he received orders peremptorily calhng him to desist and 
return without dela}- to the defense of Richmond, which was then 
threatened by General Butler. Indeed, although unknown to the 
Confederate authorities. General Grant had formed the plan for 
simultaneous movements on the part of Butler, and by Burnside 
upon Weldon, while he pressed General Lee in front ; and General 
Hoke's expedition, resulting in the capture of Plymouth and of 
Washington and his attack on New-Bern, entirely unsettled that 
plan; and it was thought by the Federal authorities that General 
Hoke's movement was devised with that very view. The conse- 
quences of his exploit, therefore, were the more important because 
it prevented the operation planned by General Grant, which would 
have been extremely dangerous to Richmond and to General Lee's 
army. In obedience to his peremptory orders, General Hoke with- 
drew his forces from the position he had gained before New-Bern, 
and, hurrying to Kinston, found transportation awaiting him, and 
on the loth of May reached Petersburg, having made the most 
rapid movement of the war. Butler had advanced on Richmond 
with 32,000 men, and had reached Drewry's Bluff, and General 
Hoke was just in time to interpose his brigade between General 
Butler and the Confederate capital. "General Hoke," wrote Gen- 
eral Beauregard, "handled his command with that resolution and 
judgment for which he was conspicuous." The enemy attacked 
him with fierceness, but failed, and Hoke pursuing, Butler with- 
drew his forces, and, as Grant felicitously expressed it, he, with 
his 32,000 men, were "bottled up." 

A permanent division, composed of Martin's and Clingman's 
North Carolina brigades and Colquitt's Georgia and Hagood's 
South Carolina, had been assigned to General Hoke, and after 
the battle of Drewry's Blufif he was transferred to the north bank 
of the James and hastened to Cold Harbor, reaching there simul- 
taneously with the advance of Grant's army at that point. Lee's 
infantry not having arrived, Hoke and the cavalry received the 
first shock of the encounter, and for three days his division bore 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 317 

the brunt of the conflict. His position was on the Confederate 
right, and not having been attached to any army corps, he reported 
to General Lee directly himself. On the ist of June, Grant ordered 
his Sixth Corps and most of the Eighteenth Corps to move on the 
position held by General Hoke and General Kershaw. The attack 
was repeatedly and signally repulsed with great loss to the enemy. 
On the morning of the 3d, General Grant directed an assault by 
his entire army, and the Federals advanced in many lines. "The 
time of actual advance was not over eight minutes ; in that little 
period more men fell bleeding as they advanced than at any other 
like period throughout the war." "The carnage on the Federal 
side was fearful. The ground in Hoke's entire front, over which 
the enemy charged, was literally covered with their dead and 
wounded. No wonder that when the command was given to 
renew the assault the Federal soldiers sullenly and silently de- 
clined. The order was issued through their officers to their sub- 
ordinate commanders, and from them through the wonted chan- 
nels, but no man stirred, the immobile lines thus pronouncing the 
verdict, silent yet emphatic, against further slaughter." 

At that time General Lee was ill in his tent, and as Hoke's 
Division had not been with him in the great encounters through 
which his army had recently passed, he was nervous, as he knew 
they would have to stand the brunt of Grant's fierce onset; so 
he sent Colonel Venable to ask General Hoke to come and see him 
about it. General Hoke, however, replied that he was expecting 
an attack momentarily and could not then leave, but that General 
Lee need be under no apprehension, for his division would hold 
that line against the expected assault. After the attack had been 
made and repulsed. General Hoke repaired to the tent of General 
Lee, and found him on his cot sitting up, and, despite his illness, 
"bold and with the spirit of a gamecock." 

In that last battle between the armies of Grant and Lee, on the 
line that Grant had boastfully taken to capture Richmond, for he 
declared "he would fight it out on that line if it took all summer," 
the Federal army in the space of a few moments lost near 10,000 
men, and although three times ordered to renew the assault, did 



3i8 NORTH CAROLINA 

not move again into action. It was the end of Grant's active 
campaign to take Richmond, according to his plan, a total failure 
in the line of his operations ; and in that great and decisive action 
General Hoke and his division played a conspicuous part. Grant 
then began to entrench and approach Lee's line by parallels; but 
in a few^ days the contest with Lee's army was abandoned and 
a new movement against Petersburg was developed. To meet 
that. General Hoke's division was hurried to Petersburg, reaching 
there on the i6th of June, in time to resist the Federal approach 
and save the city ; and for ninety days it held the line from the 
Appomattox to near the Crater without losing a particle of ground. 
Later, when the Federals captured Fort Harrison on the other 
side of the James, General Hoke, with his division, was, on the 
29th of September, thrown in their front, and General Lee planned 
an assault to retake that work. General Hoke suggested to Gen- 
eral Lee that the attempt ought not to be made, as it was im- 
practicable, and would result only in loss of life without 
accomplishing any good end. General Lee, however, had full 
confidence in the ability of his troops to accomplish any under- 
taking, and pressed for the execution of his purpose; but as 
General Hoke had feared, the result was disastrous, and at last 
his former suggestion was adopted, and he constructed a line of 
earthworks where he had previously indicated, doing so by throw- 
ing up the earth from the front and making no excavation in the 
rear where water might collect, interfering with the comfort and 
rapid movement of his soldiers. The line so made he continued 
to hold for sixty days, and it never was broken. On one occasion, 
toward the end of October, it being evident that a large force 
was to assail it. General Lee was very anxious and apprehensive, 
and, coming to the New Market Road, he found General Hoke, 
who had been in the saddle at that point all night preparing to 
meet the assault, and who told him that the attack would certainly 
be at that point, and that he was ready for it, and it would be 
successfully resisted. General Lee's uneasiness was apparent until 
he himself became satisfied of the correctness of General Hoke's 
judgment, and soon the assault was made as Hoke had anticipated, 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 319 

and resulted in a crushing defeat of the attacking column. Toward 
the end of December, 1864, General Hoke was ordered with his 
command to repair to Wilmington and sustain General Bragg in 
the anticipated attack on Fort Fisher. He reached Wilmington 
just after the failure of Butler's expedition and the withdrawal of 
the Federal fleet; and believing that a second attempt would be 
immediately made, he urged General Bragg to permit him to 
throw up earthworks from the head of the sound to Fort Fisher, 
commanding the beach. This had been the plan of Captain J. C. 
Winder, the engineer for the defense of Confederate Point in 
1 86 1, but the authorities subsequently discarded it. The practical 
conclusion of General Hoke led him to the same conclusion that 
Captain Winder had reached; but General Bragg did not think 
that there would be another attack, and he had in expectation 
operations about New-Bern. So he held General Hoke's com- 
mand in camp near Wilmington. Suddenly, however, the Federal 
fleet reappeared before Fisher, Federal troops were landed on the 
beach, and the guns of the fleet prevented any infantry opposition 
to their movements. Fort Fisher fell, and General Hoke, en- 
trenched at Sugar Loaf, held his position for a month, when, the 
Federal forces having ascended the river on the south side, he 
retired, and, under orders, proceeded to Kinston, where he im- 
mediately engaged Cox's corps, and checked their advance on 
Goldsboro. Sherman's army was then approaching from Fayette- 
ville, and Hoke hastened to join the forces under General 
Joseph E. Johnston at Smithfield, and moved to the attack of that 
army. The battle of Bentonsville ensued, Hoke's division bear- 
ing the brunt of it. On the 19th of March he attacked Davis's 
and Slocumb's corps and drove them back, taking about a thou- 
sand prisoners. On the next day, Sherman's whole force being 
up, the Federals attacked, the main assault being on Hoke's 
Division, but were repulsed. General Johnston then withdrew 
to Smithfield, and as Sherman advanced retired to the west until 
Hoke's division rested at High Point and Bush Hill, where it 
remained until the surrender by Johnston on the 26th of April. 
On May ist, General Hoke bade farewell to his troops, whom he 



320 NORTH CAROLINA 

had so often led to victory. In his address he said : "You are 
parolled prisoners, not slaves. The love of liberty which led you 
into the contest burns as brightly in your hearts as ever. Cherish 
it. Associate it with the history of your past. Transmit it to your 
children. Teach them the rights of freemen and teach them to 
maintain them. Teach them the proudest day in all your proud 
career was that on which you enlisted as Southern soldiers." 
The intimate intercourse between General Lee and General Hoke 
led to their mutual admiration and affection, and General Lee 
had learned to lean on him as one of his best generals, and year 
by year General Hoke had established himself more firmly in 
the confidence of his superiors and in the love of his soldiers. 
Indeed, toward the close of the war he had come to be regarded 
as Lee's best general. As brilliant as his career had been, the 
spirit and brave heart he exhibited at the trying moment of irre- 
trievable disaster and subjugation were as creditable to him as 
his proud bearing on any field of glorious victory. 

Returning home, he at once began the life of a peaceful citizen, 
and setting a fine example, he took his war horse and plowed in 
his fields and made his crop. The following incident is worth 
repeating: One hot day that summer, as he was plowing in his 
field, a man rode by and hailed him, saying, "Ain't you General 
Hoke?" The general stopped and replied, "Yes." The man 
asked, "Ain't that thar the horse you rode in the army?" The 
general said "Yes." The man looked at him a moment, and 
wildly throwing his arms up, cried out: "God Almighty," and 
then bending over and hiding his face within his arms, started 
his horse off and moved on. 

Somewhat later. General Hoke was employed in washing for 
gold in the mountains of North Carolina, when his mother came 
to him in her carriage, bringing the news that at Governor 
Holden's instance, a Court of Inquiry was ordered to meet at 
Raleigh, to investigate the execution of the Federal soldiers taken 
near New-Bern in 1864; and offering him money, she urged him 
to leave the country. He, however, assured her that he had done 
nothing wrong, and instead of getting out of the way, he hastened 



ROBERT FREDERICK HOKE 321 

to Raleigh, where he found the Court in session. From there he 
went to Washington to see General Grant, whom he told that 
while he did not fear any investigation, yet as his health was bad, 
he did fear the ill consequences of a protracted incarceration, 
and he desired to know if his parole protected him. General 
Grant replied that he knew all about the execution of the men at 
Kinston and that General Hoke had nothing to fear; that his 
parole would protect him, and "if any one molests you, let me 
know." That was the end of the matter. 

Since the war, General Hoke has been engaged chiefly in devel- 
oping iron mines, being interested in the Cranberry Mines and in 
the mines near Chapel Hill, and he has also been largely engaged 
in real estate transactions. He has led the life of a quiet, private 
gentleman, declining all political or public employment. In 1877, 
however, at Governor Vance's solicitation, he became a State 
director in the North Carolina Railroad with the view of pro- 
tecting the State's interests in that great work, which had then 
been recently leased to the Richmond and Danville Railroad Com- 
pany, and he continued to represent the State's interests as a 
director until 1893, when he was elected a director on the part 
of the private stockholders. 

From boyhood. General Hoke has always been occupied, seek- 
ing constant and steady employment. He has never been dis- 
posed to indulge in recreation, but has been an earnest man of 
business, each day bringing its duties, which he has sought faith- 
fully to perform. His reading has been largely confined to mili- 
tary histories ; even before the war, he being a student of 
Napoleon's campaigns and of similar works. Being asked what 
suggestion he would offer to young people, he replies : "Strict 
attention to all duties of life." 

On the 7th of January, 1869, General Hoke was happily mar- 
ried to Miss Lydia A. Van Wyck, and they have had six children, 
of whom four survive. 

5". A. Ashe. 




ASHLEY HORNE 




'HAKESPEARE wrote, "Some men are born 
great, some achieve greatness, and some have 
greatness thrust upon them." Ashley Home 
of Clayton, North Carolina, belongs with those 
who have achieved greatness. His heredity 
was fine, his environment was poor, and his 
will-power was great, and equal to the task of making him a man 
of mark among his fellows. 

By descent he belongs to the sturdy and thrifty Scotch race, his 
grandfather, William Henry Home, speaking the native tongue. 
His father, Benajah Home, was a remarkable man in his day 
and generation. For about forty years he was a magistrate, 
writing the wills and deeds of his neighbors, and being the general 
business man of his whole section. In character he was charitable, 
honest, social, industrious and proud. Such was his kindness of 
heart that he lost much money standing security, and during the 
war kept his horse and buggy standing at the depot to carry home 
the sick and wounded soldiers. 

The mother, Elizabeth Tarboro, was one of nature's noble- 
women, refined, courtly, dignified, independent almost to a fault, 
asking no favors, with a strong disposition to save and accumu- 
late, losing no time from her household duties, taking no risks, 
and exerting a strong moral and spiritual influence over six boys 
and three girls. 



ASHLEY HORNE 323 



Ashley was reared a country boy, healthy, strong and robust. 
Farming was his main work, at which he was rigidly overseered 
by his father. The winter days he would spend in clearing new 
ground, getting shingles and staves at night. He was poorly 
dressed in homespun clothes, with a Stinson wool hat, while one 
pair of country-made shoes a year was his allowance. He was 
raised to work all the week, even on Saturday afternoons, when 
many other boys would be going to church. Fishing and hunting 
were unknown, except on Sundays. This rigorous out-of-door 
life developed great physical strength and the habit of continuous 
application to work, both to prove of greiat importance for his 
future success. 

Though farming occupied the most of his attention, he was 
also a natural boy trader. He had an instinct for business, and 
drove bargains from childhood. Without money, but with in- 
tegrity, he would buy cattle on his father's credit, drive them to 
Raleigh, sell, return home, settle his account, and have a margin 
left for his trouble. Peas, peaches, chickens and farm produce 
were his stock in trade. Whatever later interests might occupy 
him, he was sure to be from early habit a farmer and a trader. 

Like many another youth born in the South in the forties, his 
early education was cut short by the war between the States. The 
policy of his father was to educate his boys. Ashley was the 
fourth of the six. His turn had not come when he volunteered 
in his country's service. His whole schooling would not exceed 
two years, about half of which was received at irregular intervals 
in the fall of the year. During these two years his progress was 
rapid, and included the three R's, with a touch of Latin. Educa- 
tion was not cheap in those days, and fortunate was the boy whom 
the farm could spare to learn the sacred secrets of knowledge 
and understanding. His one memorable teacher was the famous 
William B. Jones, holding the torch of knowledge to light many 
a boy's way.- This lack of a broad education was to prove the 
chief handicap in the career of the future man. But many things 
that he did not learn in the school-room he did learn by the 
camp-fires of the most educative war in human history. 



324 NORTH CAROLINA 

It was as a stripling youth of twenty summers that as a vol- 
unteer, in 1861, he answered the call of his country. He was 
first assigned to Company C, Fiftieth North Carolina Regiment, 
stationed at Camp Holmes, but he was afterward transferred 
to the Fifty-third Regiment, of which his older brother, Sam, 
was lieutenant, in Grimes's Brigade, Rhodes's Division. Except 
for a short period in Eastern North Carolina, his service was with 
General Lee in the army of Northern Virginia, around Richmond, 
and included such notable events as the evacuation of Richmond, 
the charge at Fort Stedman, or Hare's Hill, the retreat from Rich- 
mond to Appomattox, and the surrender, the momentous news of 
which, with authentic parole, he, as orderly sergeant, with nine 
men, was the first to bring to Johnston's army at Greensboro and 
Sherman's at Durham. 

Such was the heroic training of hard labor, self-sacrifice and 
devoted loyalty to a noble cause with which he began life after 
the war. His character was his only capital when he left the 
army and its lost cause behind him and faced homeward. What 
did he find? 

A portion of Sherman's army was still occupying his father's 
plantation when he arrived there about the middle of April, 1865. 
B)- May ist the Yankees had gone, leaving the land bare of stock, 
produce and fences. He was as yet the only one of the six brothers 
to return, three of them tenting on the other side of the river, 
and two, Sam and Hardee, detained in Union prisons. It was 
late for a crop, and of animals there was none to draw the plow. 
The blight of war had reduced plenty to poverty. Here a less 
determined man might have lost time in bewailing his misfortune. 

But taught the art of resourcefulness by four years of army life, 
he took a colored boy, went in the night to the Yankee camp at 
Raleigh, where Sherman had accumulated a great quantity of 
stock taken from the people, cunningly took away two horses 
without being detected by the guards, brought them home, and 
having nothing with which to feed them, grazed one while he 
plowed with the other, and thus made for his parents a small crop 
of corn and melons. 



ASHLEY HORNE 325 



But this was not a money crop. So when it was done he 
began to split cord-wood, and thus earned his first money after 
the war. He would start from home Monday morning to go two 
miles away, work till ten o'clock at night by torchlight, sleeping 
on pine-straw for bedding, under a pine-brush shelter, remaining 
with his wood night and day, and then go home Saturday night 
to his parents. The wood was sold under contract to the railroad. 
At length an engineer on the road, becoming delighted with his 
energy and social qualities, secured for him a position as hotel 
clerk in Goldsboro. 

In this position he saved $300, with which he traded in tobacco, 
buying in Virginia and jobbing it off by the box to merchants in 
Florida. His earnings mounted up to $600. But on account 
of growing competition, and at the earnest solicitation of his 
mother, saddened at the loss of her three sons, he came back 
home to remain with her the rest of her natural life. 

But what was he to do? This decision was the crisis in his 
career. His parents wanted him to farm. His personal inclina- 
tion was for business. He saw, and was among the first to see, 
that the South was at a turning-point in its history; that its 
development must now be commercial as well as agricultural, and 
he put his boat in the current of the times. Under parental pro- 
test, he entered business with his small capital. Henceforth com- 
mercial and industrial interests were to divide his time with agri- 
culture. He did not entirely forsake farming, but kept it as his 
diversion and relaxation. It still occupies half of the day's work, 
and affords that mental pleasure so necessary to relieve the strain 
of strenuous and momentous matters. 

From these small beginnings many enterprises of great pith 
and moment have grown, until to-day Mr. Home is one of the 
busiest, largest and wealthiest farmers, merchants and manu- 
facturers in the State. Among the more important of his positions 
as industrial leader are the presidencies of the Clayton Banking 
Company, since 1899; the Clayton Cotton Mill, since 1900; the 
North Carolina Agricultural Society, since October, 1903; the Cap- 
udine Chemical Company, since February, 1904. He is also vice- 



326 NORTH CAROLINA 

president and director of the Caraleigh Phosphate and Fertilizer 
Mills, since its organization in 1890 ; and is director in a long list of 
industries, including the Raleigh Standard Oil Mill, since 1885 ; 
the Raleigh Commercial and Farmers' Bank, the Caraleigh Cotton 
Mill Company, the Wilson Farmers' Oil Mill, the Goldsboro and 
Seven Springs Securities Company, and the Eastern Life Insur- 
ance Company. Many such positions he has declined, and in a 
position once accepted he has never been succeeded. 

"How are you able, Mr. Home, to conduct so large a business?" 
he was asked. "By taking each thing as it arises," he said, "and 
finishing it; and by systematizing each industry so as to make it 
run by specific organization." 

In politics Mr. Home is a Democrat, having never scratched 
a ticket from the day when, as a soldier in the army of Northern 
Virginia, he voted for Zebulon B. Vance for governor. Because 
of his great executive ability, his sound and unvarying Democratic 
principles and personal popularity, he has naturally been often 
sought for political preferment. These offers he has usually put 
aside, though he did consent to serve as State senator in 1884-85. 
Among other committees during this session, he was a member 
of the Finance Committee, and as such helped to establish the 
Agricultural and Mechanical College. His protest is to-day 
entered on the Senate Journal in the Capitol against the free use of 
convict labor in extending the Western North Carolina Railroad 
to the Nantehala River. Politics has not proved attractive to Mr. 
Home, because it would mean the surrendering of his business 
interests and because also of a natural distaste for the trickery 
often resorted to by politicians for success. To hold aloft his 
standard would mean defeat, to lower it would sacrific self-respect. 
With Henry Clay, he would rather be right than be President. 

In character Mr. Home exemplifies personal integrity, wonder- 
ful industry, steadfastness in righteousness and charity. He has 
been a wise counsellor for the betterment of mankind, and an 
asylum of refuge to the weak, the widows in their affliction, and 
the fatherless. With every step in life he was striving for personal 
character and the improvement of mankind. He coveted relia- 



ASHLEY HORNE 327 



bility as men love jewels ; and as a borrower and lender of money 
in a great volume of business he has never given security or put 
up collateral. 

These qualities have always elicited the highest esteem and 
warmest admiration from his fellow-men. Having served for 
many years, he but recently resigned the chairmanship of the local 
school board. Since 1901 he has been colonel of the Walter Moore 
Camp of the United Confederate Veterans, being the only man 
who ever held it more than one year. He is also major on General 
Carr's staff of the State Association of Confederate Veterans. He 
has never belonged to a secret society of any kind, reads history 
but not fiction as a diversion, is a careful student of contemporary 
affairs, is in full sympathy with the cause of temperance, the work 
of religion and the influence of the church in human life. 

To what influences is such a life due? Mr. Home inherited 
his ambition to succeed, to which he had only to be true. His 
heredity and early life influenced him most; then came in order 
the great schooling of the army, the opportunity afforded by the 
change in social conditions wrought by the war, and his close 
application to all duties never permitting him to "flounder 
around." His uncompleted early education has been his severest 
handicap in life's race, but for which he would have run yet more 
swiftly. 

"What advice would you give to young people starting out in 
life?" Mr. Home was asked. "Cultivate integrity and industry," 
he said; "seek expert advice, avoid all habits of dissipation, and 
utilize every hour and day for personal and social improvement. 
Work is the greatest word in the English language. Make to 
yourselves friends of the homely virtues. Decide on your busi- 
ness, stick to your job, and love your work. Success is a problem 
with many obstacles in the way ; these suggestions are the guides 
to its solution. Be honest, be temperate, and work, and the great- 
est of these is work." 

Mr. Home was born March 27, 1841. He has been twice 
married : first to the beautiful Miss Cornelia Frances Lee, a union 
that was blessed with three lovely children; and again to the 



328 NORTH CAROLINA 

accomplished Miss Rena Hasseltine Beckwith, who has blessed 
him with a rare and radiant daughter. 

"My chief object in life from now out," says Mr. Home, "is to 
give all information possible for the advancement of agriculture." 
Under such a president, the North Carolina Agricultural Society 
will apply scientific knowledge to practical farming, correcting 
and enlightening the agricultural interests of the State. 

The lesson of this life, easy to read and simple to follow, is that 
of labor and honesty, work according to righteous principle. 
These attainments are the virtues worthy the seeking, that insure 
material, moral and spiritual successes, and that crown character 
as the noblest possession of mankind. 

Herman H. Home. 





EDWARD HYDE 




^^[Vj^^f^^Jl^y^ N the settlement of Albemarle, a governor was 
*-^*^^^^"'^*^»* appointed for that county by the Lords Pro- 
prietors in England until 1689, when Philip 
Ludwell was appointed governor of North 
Carolina, and three years later authority was 
given to the governor of Carolina, at Charles- 
ton, to appoint a deputy governor for North Carolina, and that 
practice continued until 1710. In 1709 the Lords Proprietors 
designated Colonel Edward Hyde to be deputy governor of North 
Carolina, and he was to receive his commission from Governor 
Edward Tynte, at Charleston. 

Edward Hyde was a grandson of the great Earl of Clarendon, 
whose name he bore. His father, also named Edward (son of 
Clarendon), died in 1675, and is buried in Westminster Abbey. 
One of Clarendon's daughters, Anne Hyde, was the wife of James, 
Duke of York, afterward James II., but died before that monarch's 
accession. She was the mother of Queen Mary (wife of Wil- 
liam HL) and Queen Anne. Hence, Governor Hyde of North 
Carolina was the first cousin of the reigning queen, Anne, dur- 
ing his entire administration. It was in the summer of 1710 that 
Hyde reached America. Governor Tynte (from whom he was 
to receive his commission as deputy governor) died before his 
arrival, and he was without a commission; but he did have some 



330 NORTH CAROLINA 

letters proving that he had been designated for the appointment. 
These being shown, he was by general consent made president 
of the Council (acting governor) until a commission could be 
procured. In the meantime, the Lords Proprietors decided to make 
Hyde full governor of North Carolina. Though they made this 
appointment in December, 1710, it was not until May 9, 1712, that 
he was sworn in at a meeting of the Council in North Carolina, 
and he became the first governor of the colony under the new 
plan of administration; after that the governors of North Caro- 
lina were appointed in England. 

When Hyde reached North Carolina, the colony was torn by 
a civil commotion known as Cary's Rebellion. The leader of this 
insurrection was Colonel Thomas Cary, formerly deputy governor 
under Sir Nathaniel Johnson. Though Cary at first consented 
to Hyde's becoming president of the Council, he later denied his 
authority in that station, and also refused obedience to laws passed 
by an Assembly which Hyde called. That Assembly then ordered 
Cary into custody, but he escaped, and gathered many followers, 
and fortified his house near Bath with artillery, so that he could 
not be taken. Afterward he fitted up an armed brigantine, with 
the avowed purpose of capturing Hyde and his Council, who 
then applied to Governor Spottswood of Virginia for help, and 
Spottswood sent a party of marines to their aid, but before the 
marines arrived, Cary's party made their attack, that ended dis- 
astrously. Their armed vessel was abandoned and captured, and 
Cary fled. Later, some of the leaders of the rebellion were taken 
and sent to England for trial, but were not punished. Cary him- 
self has been charged with stirring up the Indian War, presently 
to be mentioned. 

In 1710, about the time of Hyde's arrival in North Carolina, 
commissioners were af work endeavoring to ascertain and settle 
the correct boundary between Virginia and North Carolina. 
These commissioners, however, failed to agree, and it was some 
years later, in 1729, before the boundary was run. 

The greatest disaster in the history of North Carolina occurred 
during Governor Hyde's administration, in 171 1, when the lower 



EDWARD HYDE 



331 



Tuscaroras and other Indians on the Pamlico and Neuse attacked 
the settlements on those rivers and massacred more than 130 men, 
women and children. Governor Hyde was a man of good parts 
and good character. In religious matters Governor Hyde was an 
adherent of the Church of England, and served as one of the 
vestry of Chowan precinct. 

He died of a malady supposed to have been yellow fever on 
September 8, 1712, and was succeeded by Thomas Pollock, presi- 
dent of the Council, who was acting governor until the arrival 
of Governor Charles Eden. 

One of the oldest counties (formerly called precincts) in North 
Carolina was named Hyde, as a compliment to Governor Hyde. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 






THOMAS JORDAN JARVIS 

IITH the first little band of adventurous planters 
who made their homes on the Albemarle was 
Thomas Jarvis, who bought from the Indians 
a tract of land on the neck between the Per- 
quimans River and the "Carolina Sound," as 
the Albemarle was then called, just west of the 
swamp dividing it from Colonel Jenkins's place; and on the ap- 
pointment of Colonel Ludwell in 1691 as governor of both 
Carolinas, acting under his powers, he appointed as deputy gov- 
ernor of North Carolina Thomas Jarvis, who for several years 
filled the position of governor of the colony ; and from that period 
to the present the name has been a familiar one to the people of 
the Albemarle section. 

In Revolutionary times. General Samuel Jarvis led the Albe- 
marle militia to the rendezvous on Deep River to cover expected 
operations from South Carolina. A century later, Thomas Jordan 
Jarvis, who was born at Jarvisburg, Currituck County, on the 
i8th of January, 1836, animated by a like spirit of patriotism, 
became a soldier in the cause of Southern Independence. His 
father was Bannister Hardy Jarvis, a minister of the Gospel and 
a farmer, a man of strong convictions, positive in his conclusions 
and steadfast in his devotion to all the duties of life, who sought 
rather the rewards of the world to come than the accumulation 
of fortune and earthly substance. 




Ol/Kh 



y ■'^;;hjr-zj^i^ 




THOMAS JORDAN JARVIS 333 

Full of vigor and health in youth, the subject of this sketch 
passed his boyhood on the farm, happy in the love of home and 
devoted to his mother, Elizabeth Daly Jarvis, whose influence 
on his moral and spiritual life has remained a potent force with 
him throughout his eventful career. His father's circumstances 
being straitened, the subject of this sketch did not enjoy the 
advantages of an early education, but after attending the country 
schools in boyhood, being determined to improve himself, when 
nineteen years of age he entered Randolph-Macon College, then 
located near Boyton, Virginia, and with money earned by teach- 
ing at intervals, and through the assistance furnished by Mr. John 
Sanderson, he finally completed his course there in i860, receiving 
the degree of A.M. from his Alma Mater the next year. On 
graduating, he opened a school in Pasquotank County, where he 
was engaged in teaching in the spring of 1861, when the Civil 
War came on. 

Zealous in the cause of the South, he enlisted first in the Seven- 
teenth North Carolina Regiment, but on May 16, 1861, he was 
commissioned first lieutenant of Company B, Eighth North Caro- 
lina Regiment, of which the lamented Henry M. Shaw was 
colonel ; and on April 22, 1863, he was promoted to be captain of 
his company. He was an excellent soldier, cool, resolute and 
unflinching in the presence of danger, and he displayed a heroism, 
fortitude and endurance not surpassed by any of his comrades in 
arms. After other services. Captain Jarvis was one of those 
engaged upon the severe duty of defending Battery Wagner, and 
with his companions went through that terrible ordeal with great 
credit to himself and to North Carolina. His regiment was a 
part of Clingman's Brigade, and later it was assigned to Hoke's 
Division. Under General Hoke it participated in the capture of 
Plymouth in April, 1864, and stormed Fort Williams successfully, 
losing 154 men killed and wounded, one-third of its number. At 
the battle of Drewry's Bluff, in May, 1864, the Eighth Regiment 
moved forward to the charge with a steadiness characteristic of 
North Carolina soldiers, and as the enemy made stubborn resist- 
ance, the regiment suffered heavily. Among those wounded on 



334 NORTH CAROLINA 

that day was Captain Jarvis, who received a wound in his right 
arm, necessitating a resection of a part of the bone, from which 
his arm has never fully recovered, being in a measure useless to 
him. He was never able to rejoin his command. He was con- 
fined in hospital at Richmond and at hospital tent at Petersburg 
until October, 1864. He was on sick leave with his wounded arm 
in a sling when the surrender took place, and he was paroled in 
May, 1865. 

When the war was over, and while the future was still involved 
in doubt and obscurity, Captain Jarvis, with the same courage he 
had displayed on the fields of Virginia, looked the circumstances 
of his life resolutely in the face, and applying himself to business, 
opened a small store in Tyrrell County, at the same time studying 
law and taking part in public affairs. And it may be well to 
state here that such was his character for personal honesty and 
integrity that he was able to buy his entire stock of goods on 
credit and to borrow money enough to pay the freight on them 
from Norfolk, Virginia, to Columbia, North Carolina. He has 
ever maintained this reputation. Tall and commanding in person, 
and with a vigorous mind and an indomitable spirit, he did not 
despair because of the heavy strokes of adverse fortune, but 
applied himself to rendering such public service as was possible 
under the conditions of that eventful period. In the fall of 1865, 
President Johnson having declared North Carolina again restored 
to the Union, a State convention was called, and the friends of 
Captain Jarvis in Currituck brought him forward as a candidate 
for election to that body. Fortunately, he was elected, and then 
began a public career alike honorable to himself and useful to the 
people of North Carolina, and from that time onward his name 
has been closely connected with the history of this State. Obtain- 
ing his license in June, 1867, he began to practice law, but his 
intelligent appreciation of the grave questions then pressing on 
public attention led him to take a deep interest in political move- 
ments. The State government was overthrown under the Recon- 
struction Acts of 1867, and in the spring of 1868 a new consti- 
tution was adopted, and at the same election Captain Jarvis was 



THOMAS JORDAN JARVIS 335 

chosen to represent the people of Tyrrell County in the House of 
Representatives ; and in the fall of that year he made an extensive 
canvass as an elector on the Seymour and Blair ticket. When the 
legislature met, he allied himself with John W. Graham, Plato 
Durham, James L. Robinson and the few other Democrats of that 
body in strenuous opposition to the financial and partisan measures 
of the Republican majority. They were but a handful, but most 
gallantly did they throw themselves into the breach, and stood 
steadfast, unmovable in their adherence to the best interests of the 
white people of the State; and as the session grew, with it grew 
the fame of these young men, whose positions gave them leader- 
ship in the Democratic Party, and whose wisdom, prudence and 
courageous action won them the plaudits of the people. Their 
triumph in establishing the Bragg-Phillips Investigating Com- 
mittee and in repealing the special tax laws was complete, and 
was perhaps without an equal in the whole history of American 
commonwealths, and the people loved to do them honor. 
To their action was largely due those events which culminated 
in the defeat of the Republicans in 1870, the restoration 
of dominion to the white people of the State, the disband- 
ment of Kirk's army, the re-establishment of civil law, the im- 
peachment of Governor Holden, and the pacification of the State 
at that early date, and the subsequent era of quiet, harmony 
and prosperity. When the new Assembly met. Captain Jarvis, 
being again a member, was tendered the speaker's chair, and 
he became the chief director of State legislation, and exerted 
a controlling influence on the destiny of the people of North 
Carolina. 

The Democratic Conservative Party was then in a formative 
state, and Captain Jarvis exercised great influence in welding 
the discordant elements of opposition to the radicalism of the 
Republican Party into a solid and enduring organization. And 
his wisdom and prudence were no less notable than his boldness 
and courageous action had been at the previous session. At the 
close of the legislature, he moved to the county of Pitt and formed 
a partnership with David M. Carter, one of the strongest intellects 



336 NORTH CAROLINA 

of the State, and that fall he canvassed the State as an elector on 
the Greeley ticket. During the next three years he devoted him- 
self to his professional work ; but in 1875 he was elected a member 
of the constitutional convention, and to his prudent management 
was chiefly due the power of the Democrats to organize and con- 
trol that body, which was evenly divided between the two parties. 
He was largely instrumental in procuring the adoption of the 
constitutional amendment giving power to the legislature to alter 
the system of county government, which secured the white people 
of the eastern part of the State from the domination of large 
negro majorities. 

In 1876, when Vance was nominated for governor. Captain 
Jarvis was chosen by the convention as its candidate for lieutenant 
governor, and he again made an extensive canvass throughout 
the western counties ; and upon Vance's election as United States 
senator, in February, 1879, he succeeded to the executive chair, 
to which he was re-elected in 1880 for a full term. During the 
six years in which he was governor, he impressed himself more 
on the active industries of the State than any other governor has 
ever done. He was wise and prudent in council and bold and 
progressive in action. He deemed it a function of the executive 
office to give direction to public measures, and he met the responsi- 
bilities of his position with zeal and patriotism and a high order 
of ability. He believed that the people looked to the governor 
for a detailed account of his stewardship, and he participated 
largely in every campaign, and challenged the most thorough 
scrutiny into every act of his administration, whose cleanness and 
integrity commended it to public confidence. He sought to be 
governor of the entire State and to advance the welfare of every 
section. Particularly was he strenuous in his efforts to promote 
public education, and he won the cordial good will of the blacks 
as well as the confidence and esteem of the whites. He used every 
means to advance the construction of the Western North Carolina 
Railroad, and eventually, when it became necessary for him to do 
so, he convened the legislature in special session, and disposed of 
that road, in order that it might be speedily finished. Under his 



THOMAS JORDAN JARVIS 337 

aggressive industrial leadership the legislature also authorized the 
sale of the State's interest in a dilapidated railroad in operation 
from Fayetteville to the gulf in Chatham County. This sale was 
followed by the speedy extension of the road west to Mount Airy 
and south and east to Bennettsville, South Carolina, and to Wil- 
mington, under the name of the Cape Fear and Yadkin Valley 
Railroad. It was under his administration, also, that the Western 
Asylum at Morganton, the Eastern Asylum at Goldsboro, and the 
Governor's Mansion at Raleigh were built; and without legis- 
lative authority, he acquired for the Agricultural Department the 
property which has since become its home, and on which the 
Supreme Court Building and State Library have been erected. 
Under his wise administration, peace and order prevailed, the 
industries of the State were greatly advanced and party bitter- 
ness largely disappeared, and race antagonism was allayed. As 
its crowning glory, just before his retirement, a State Exposition 
was held at Raleigh, which lasted for six weeks, which showed 
marvellous progress in the industries and general prosperity of 
the people. Indeed, it may be asserted that no State can boast a 
more splendid administration than that of Governor Jarvis, one 
during which, considering the impoverished condition of the in- 
habitants, so much was accomplished for the advancement of 
education, for the promotion of beneficent public purposes and the 
establishment of industrial prosperity and of contentment in the 
homes of the people. 

Upon the retirement of Governor Jarvis from the executive 
chair, he was appointed by President Cleveland United States 
Minister to Brazil, a position which he filled as a worthy repre- 
sentative of his country, maintaining a high position at the Court 
to which he was accredited. After the election of President 
Harrison, he returned to North Carolina and resumed the practice 
of the law at Greenville. In 1892 he presided over the State 
Democratic Convention, at which Elias Carr was nominated for 
governor, and Governor Jarvis entered largely into that campaign, 
and contributed much to the election of the Democratic ticket. 
In April, 1894, on the death of Senator Vance, Governor Carr 



338 NORTH CAROLINA 

tendered Governor Jarvis the vacant senatorship, which he 
accepted, and being a fine parliamentarian and thoroughly ac- 
quainted with all public measures, he was at once accorded a high 
position in the Senate. In the election in the fall of 1894 for 
members of the General Assembly, the Republicans and Populists 
fused, and as a result of this fusion Mr. Pritchard and Mr. Butler 
were elected to the Senate. At the end of his term. Senator Jarvis 
returned to the practice of his profession, and he has continued to 
perform his duties as a public man and a private citizen with his 
customary patriotism. In the several campaigns since 1894 he 
has contributed his best exertions for party success, and in con- 
siderable measure the victories since achieved have been due to 
his endeavors. He has ever been an industrious and laborious 
worker, and in these campaigns he worked most effectively. He 
has a mind capable of comprehending the details of the most 
intricate subjects, and he fully masters whatever engages his 
attention. As a speaker he is clear, bold and forcible; plain in 
language and convincing in argument. His speeches never tire 
his audience, and although they do not abound in high flights of 
oratory, they please, interest and convince, and it has been often 
said that he is the most masterly man in public debate that North 
Carolina has produced in recent years, except alone that popular 
favorite. Senator Vance. 

Senator Jarvis has appeared in many of the most important legal 
cases in the State. He was of counsel for the justices of the 
Supreme Court when they were impeached in 1902, and he was 
employed for the State in the litigation concerning the Atlantic 
and North Carolina Railroad. He was the leading counsel of 
Mr. Josephus Daniels when that gentleman was arrested on the 
order of Judge Purnell for contempt of court in making some 
publication concerning that judge and his action with reference 
to the Atlantic. and North Carolina Railroad; and Senator Jarvis 
hastened to Washington, and applying to the chief justice of the 
United States Supreme Court, and to Judge Pritchard of the 
Circuit Court, succeeded in short order in having the orders of 
Judge Purnell that were complained of rendered harmless, and in 



THOMAS JORDAN JARVIS 339 

the latter case, Judge Pritchard, on the hearing, promptly dis- 
charged Mr. Daniels from arrest. 

Governor Jarvis is a member of the Methodist Episcopal 
Church, and he has represented his church in the general con- 
ference, and has long been a trustee of Trinity College. He 
thinks that his early experience as a teacher and his home influ- 
ence and the example of his godly father and mother had great 
effect in moulding his character and determining his course in 
life. He is a member of the Odd Fellows and of the Knights of 
Pythias, and he is noted for his benevolence of character. 

During the course of his long public career. Senator Jarvis 
has made many important addresses and written many State 
papers of a high order of merit. In particular did his address 
at the opening of the Exposition in Boston in 1883 bring him 
great reputation as an orator, winning him commendation and 
fame throughout Massachusetts. His articles in the several 
Democratic handbooks are models for clearness of statement and 
excellent English, and they have been very effective in influencing 
public opinion and determining public action. In 1883 the Uni- 
versity of North Carolina conferred upon him the degree of LL.D, 
and he has always been a warm friend of the University, although 
also seeking to promote the other colleges of the State. It is 
probable, however, that his greatest and best work in the cause 
of education was his active work for the common schools of the 
State. In his messages to the General Assembly, he pleaded for 
longer terms and better schools, and while in office he delivered 
many addresses in different sections of the State in advocacy of 
a better system of popular education, and as a private citizen he 
has continued the work. He has taken an active part in establish- 
ing a system of graded schools for his own town, and is chairman 
of the Board of Trustees of this system of schools in Greenville. 

In 1874 Governor Jarvis was happily married to Miss Mary 
Woodson, the accomplished daughter of John Woodson, Esq., 
of Virginia, a lady of fine literary attainments, who has made 
some notable contributions to North Carolina literature, and who 
is greatly admired and esteemed by a large circle of friends 



340 



NORTH CAROLINA 



throughout North Carolina. It is probable that no two persons 
were ever more happily united. They live largely in the com- 
panionship of each other, and it is well known that the governor 
gladly credits his wife with a large share of his popularity and 
success. 

Being asked to give some suggestion that would be helpful to 
young people, Governor Jarvis replied : "Avoid feverish anxiety 
to become rich or great in a day. Let success be the result of 
steady growth. Strive to serve the country and humanity. In the 
end this will be the best service to self." 

i'. A. Ashe. 








-Ch^^z-^ 



W^^ 




^Ctrx^i^ 





WILLIAM JOHNSTON 

?T the ancestral home of the Johnstons, in a 
portion of Lincoln County, afterward included 
in the formation of Gaston County, there was 
born March 5, 1817, a child who was destined 
to become a conspicuous figure and an impor- 
tant factor in the history of the two Carolinas 
and Georgia, where his life work was accomplished. He did con- 
structive work, and left his impress on the annals of his country. 
The boy was named William, and his parents were Robert 
Johnston and Mary (Reid) Johnston. In a reminiscent mood, 
after he had attained manhood, he said of his parents : "When 
my father sought the consent of Dr. John Reid to the marriage 
of his daughter, he gave it with this injunction, 'You make 
the money and Mary will take care of it.' " The prediction was 
fully verified in the fact that the couple raised upon their planta- 
tion a family of twelve children, all of whom became finely edu- 
cated, and attained the highest social distinction in the com- 
munities where they settled. 

The early career of WilHam Johnston was similar to that of 
the average boy of his environment. His parents, who were of 
Scotch-Irish origin, imbued him with the habits of early rising 
and activity upon the farm, while he enjoyed such diversions 
and sports as the barnyard, the forests and the streams afforded. 
He was prepared for college by Robert G. Allison, a noted high 



342 NORTH CAROLINA 

school instructor, at an academy a few miles from the Johnston 
homestead. After graduating from the University of North 
Carolina in 1840, he, Alexander Lillington and John H. Burton 
composed the first law class that received licenses from the since 
famous law school of Chief Justice Richmond M. Pearson, at 
Richmond Hill. He located in Charlotte in 1842 for the practice 
of his profession, and was soon afterward chosen president of the 
Charlotte and Taylorsville Plank Road, and he completed a large 
part of the road at a smallness of outlay that was the astonish- 
ment of the stockholders and projectors. Plank roads at that 
day were the principal inland highways for transportation and 
commerce worthy of such a name, and it required management 
of a high order to make them self-supporting. 

On March 18, 1846, he was married to Annie Eliza, the only 
child of Dr. George Franklin Graham and his wife, Martha A. 
Harris of Memphis, Tennessee. During the same -year he was 
elected president of the Charlotte and South Carolina Railroad 
from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Columbia, South Carolina. 
His duties rapidly became so exacting in his new field that 
he was forced to abandon the pursuit of the law. 

He rose steadily in public estimation as a safe and prudent 
business executive head, and though quite a young man when 
he had attained the highest prominence, his success is not sur- 
prising, for heredity must be reckoned in a measure with his 
achievements. One grandparent, James Johnston, was a colonel, 
and Dr. John Reid, another ancestor, was a captain in the Revo- 
lutionary War. William Johnston was then a bough from the 
oak, not the willow. Circumstances do not make men ; they 
discover them, and he rose above his surroundings by dint of 
merit alone, his contemporaries being the reverse of weaklings, 
and his competitors the strongest characters of their generation. 
It could be said of him as it was of Hampden, that "he had a 
head to contrive, a tongue to persuade and a hand to execute." 

In addition to the natural qualities named, being gentle-blooded 
and well educated, he had every advantage that striking individual 
characteristics, vigorous health and high station commanded. He 



WILLIAM JOHNSTON 343 

was endowed with a magnetic presence, plausible voice and 
polished manners ; yet within the velvet glove dwelt an iron hand 
that made itself felt in every encounter. Being a winner himself, 
his attitude was that of a winner. To venture like a pioneer, to 
fight like a soldier and to do a man's work — these were the things 
that appealed to him and gripped hold of him as no other things 
could. Those who served under him as heads of departments 
admit that he possessed that great secret of administration, which 
is to give the fullest confidence to those under him, and to leave 
to each one the fullest responsibility for all that comes within 
his province. "Despatch is the soul of business" was his motto, 
and success being a guiding star, he early recognized the law that 
the unfit must either stand aside or go down in inglorious defeat. 
With his temperament and creed of self-help and self-responsi- 
bility, he had not the patience to dally with the dastard nor time 
to plead with the sluggard. A character of such determination 
and aggressiveness naturally made its possessor a storm center 
of militant opposition, even while it attracted loyal followers and 
lasting friendships. 

In 1859, as president, he began the building of the Atlantic, 
Tennessee and Ohio Railroad from Charlotte toward its western 
terminus. Only forty-six miles, the distance between Charlotte 
and Statesville, was completed and operated when the oncoming 
war of 1 86 1 prevented further extension. By common consent, 
it is conceded that this short line was one of the most economically 
constructed roads in the United States. 

When President Lincoln called upon North Carolina for her 
quota of the 75,000 troops for the purpose of subjugating the 
seceding States, William Johnston and James W. Osborne of 
Charlotte were elected delegates from Mecklenburg County to 
the State convention, and the two were signers of the Ordinance 
of Secession, May 20, 1861. While en route to the convention 
at Raleigh, William Johnston noted eleven Jews enlisted in one 
military company from Charlotte, and dwelling upon the manifest 
injustice of a class being debarred by law from holding office in 
a State, while its members were volunteering for the State's de- 



344 NORTH CAROLINA 

fense, he introduced and had passed an ordinance removing the 
disabiHties of the Hebrew citizens throughout North Carolina. 

He took a prominent stand in the dehberations of the con- 
vention, and Governor ElUs, being favorably impressed with his 
executive ability, appointed him commissary general of the State, 
with the rank of colonel. Colonel Johnston resigned his seat in 
the convention and performed his new duties until September, 
1 86 1, when he gave up office, feeling that he could render better 
service to his State and the Confederacy by devoting his undivided 
attention to the management of the Charlotte and South Carolina 
and the Atlantic, Tennessee and Ohio railroads. His fitness for 
managing public affairs was recognized to such an extent that 
he was persuaded to become a candidate for governor in 1862. 
There were no State political conventions held during that year, 
nor, indeed, during the war, but there was a gathering of Demo- 
crats from the neighboring counties at Charlotte, who presented 
the name of Colonel Johnston as a candidate, while some county 
meetings in various parts of the State brought out Colonel Z. B. 
Vance. Colonel Johnston made no canvass, nor did Colonel 
Vance. There was some feeling that old party differences should 
be forgotten ; that the party lines which divided the people while 
citizens of the United States should not be recognized among 
Confederates struggling for Southern independence; and that 
inasmuch as the Confederate administration was largely in the 
hands of former Democrats, State affairs should be entrusted to 
the former Whigs ; and besides, the soldiers generally were drawn 
to support Colonel Vance, who was very popular in the army, and 
at that time more than one-half of the voters of the State were in 
the army. Colonel Vance was elected. 

In 1864 President Jefferson Davis urged Colonel Johnston to 
accept the position of commissary general of the Confederacy, but 
he declined, as his trained hand was upon the throttle- valve, and 
his heart was in the work of transporting soldiers and supplies 
to prolong the life of the Confederate cause — a position equal in 
merit and importance to that of a general in the forefront of battle. 

In February, 1865, Sherman's army destroyed 60 of the no 



WILLIAM JOHNSTON 345 

miles of track of the Charlotte and South Carolina Railroad, 
burning the bridges, shops, depots, much of the rolling stock and 
more than 1000 bales of cotton belonging to the railroad company. 
When the war ended, the people were pauperized and business 
was paralyzed. 

Along the public highways lay the charred and smouldering 
ruins of homes, while homeless women and children eked out a 
wretched sustenance from the corn grains left in the wake of 
a hostile army. Out of the wreck the Charlotte and South Caro- 
lina Railroad saved about $168,000 worth of cotton, and this was 
virtually the only available asset that had escaped the torch. This 
sum was a nucleus with which the president undertook to rehabili- 
tate the road, but the public and the outside financial world con- 
fided in him, and he made the venture a glorious success. By 1866 
he was operating the road from Charlotte to Columbia, and in the 
same year he began the Columbia and Augusta Railroad, 85 miles 
in length, the two merging as one into the Charlotte, Columbia and 
Augusta Railroad. 

The equipment and extension of this important road under such 
adverse circumstances was a stupendous undertaking; the task 
was Titanic; the accomplishment was a crowning glory in an 
eventful industrial career, and marks the leading spirit as a man 
of tireless energy, indomitable will and well-nigh matchless, 
prophetic insight. The road, as it ran along the soil of three 
Southern States, was typical of its projector and builder, whose 
ideas were broad-gauged, like the road, and whose conceptions 
were continental in their magnitude. The incident reminds one 
of the words of the first Napoleon to his marshal on the eve of a 
campaign into Italy. When the officer saw the giant intervening 
mountains loom miles into the clouds, he said that they were 
impassable and could not be crossed. "Sir," was the reply of the 
great commander, "there shall be no Alps." 

His entire life as a railroad official was full of excitement and 
adventure, for, as we have said, being a positive character, and 
having complete confidence in his own plans, he aroused and kept 
alive a most formidable opposition, but in all public meetings of 



346 NORTH CAROLINA 

stockholders and interested parties he led his forces in person, 
neither asking nor granting quarter. In 1873 his connection with 
railroads as president was given up, and he occupied his time 
with the care of his large private and personal business interests. 
He was one of the charter members of the Commercial National 
Bank of Charlotte, and became at various times adviser and 
director in a number of other important and industrial enterprises. 

He was repeatedly elected mayor of Charlotte, and generally 
made his canvasses independent of party caucuses or political con- 
ventions. Being thus untrammelled by partisan exactions, he 
proved a safe and excellent official, managing the city's finances 
with the same prudence as his own affairs, ignoring the clamors 
of place-hunters, and applying the revenues arising from taxation 
strictly to needed improvements and public betterments. He was 
neither Puritan nor libertine in his judgment of public offenders, 
and if he exhibited partiality, it was in the form of leniency 
toward the low-born, ignorant and poor. For the beasts of burden 
and the entire brute creation entrusted to man's care he had also 
a keen sympathy, and he did much officially to lighten their loads 
and protect them from unnecessary abuse. 

His figure was tall and commanding, and being faultless in his 
attire, his personal appearance was so striking that he would 
have attracted attention in the most distinguished assemblage. 
His arguments upon the political and financial issues of the day 
were those of a broad-minded, well-posted statesman. His public 
utterances on all subjects were clear, concise, free from rhetorical 
flourishes, and spoken in pure English, the musical cadence of 
his voice making the delivery very attractive. 

He dealt too much, however, in cold facts and figures to appeal 
to the senses and emotions of popular political gatherings, and he 
lacked the revivalist's art of oratory that raises, to satisfy, the 
cravings for excitement and temporary amusement. Those who 
have light in themselves never revolve as satellites ; Johnston, being 
a leader, could not be led. His inborn dignity and pride pro- 
tected him from the elbow touch of manipulators of conventions, 
and prevented contact with those who made politics a trade. 



WILLIAM JOHNSTON 347 

Besides, there were many party tenets which he considered mere 
prejudices, and so he openly proclaimed them, holding with 
Disraeli that neither free trade nor protection was a principle, 
but an expedient — an independence of thought strongly resented 
by party leaders. 

He was a strong candidate for Congress in his county and dis- 
trict for a number of years, and once missed the prize only by the 
narrowest margin. Had he been elected, no one cognizant of his 
equipment doubted that he would have made a national reputation 
among his peers. 

His home became him. He was gracious as a host, entertaining 
handsomely, and appeared happiest when surrounded by choice 
friends and congenial associates. On his brow wrinkles were 
written, but his spirit never grew old, and his sympathies were 
wide and catholic. He was fond of a good story, a good dinner, 
a fine picture, was affected by the swell of music, enjoyed an 
intellectual sermon and a new scientific fact. A conversation with 
him was an instruction, for he had been thrown intimately with 
many of the leading actors of a dramatic era, and as his knowledge 
ripened and his observation mellowed by experience, his talk grew 
rare indeed in quality. He could make the most commonplace 
subjects and customs interesting by showing their direct bearing 
upon the welfare of society. He wisely attributed most of 
the prevailing ailments and much of intemperance to the result of 
clinging to primitive and unsanitary methods of cooking. In the 
span of a few decades he had seen the country girdled by rails, 
and he thought there should be an advance along the entire line, 
but especially in domestic affairs, which was the foundation stone 
of happiness and health. He could not understand, he maintained, 
why people would not assert their intelligence in properly pre- 
paring the food which nature had so bountifully provided. 

It was inspiring to hear him reason upon the problems of man- 
kind, and the things which pertained to the future life, calmly, 
with an earnestness devoid of passion and free from antecedent 
bias. He sought to change no man's faith nor to shake any one's 
belief, but only wanted to satisfy his own conscience. He ex- 



348 NORTH CAROLINA 

claimed with Carlyle, "How to paint to the sensual eye what 
passes in the Holy of Holies of man's soul?" God only requires 
the religion of the heart. In spiritual matters Colonel Johnston's 
maxim was, "That conscience was a sacred sanctuary, where God 
alone had a right to enter as judge." There was no orthodoxy in 
inhumanity, and in charity and kindness there was no heresy. 
An honest doubt had precedence over dogma, and his conception 
of the Creator was that of a merciful, not a vengeful being. He 
never paltered with conscience for the sake of temporary vogue, 
and believing that religion was man's consciousness of God, and 
theology man's theory of God, it mattered little with him what 
compass was studied so that it pointed with reasonable certainty 
toward the pole. 

His wife died October 13, 1881, four children surviving: Mrs. 
Julia M., wife of Colonel A. B. Andrews of Raleigh, one of the 
foremost railroad officials in America; Frank G. of Charlotte; 
Cora M., wife of Adjutant-General T. R. Robertson; and William 
R. of Richmond, Virginia. Mrs. Robertson died November, 1901. 
Colonel Johnston had been happily married, and remained a 
widower the balance of his life. His closing years were spent in 
the quietude of home among his children and grandchildren and 
in placing his large estates in such a shape as to give the least 
trouble to the inheritors under his will. 

He fell asleep in the full possession of his mental faculties 
May 20, 1896, in the city of Charlotte, where for more than fifty 
years he had been one of the leading, wealthiest and most public- 
spirited citizens. The sunrise of his existence was auspicious ; 
the sunset was behind a cloudless sky. To live in the affections 
of those left behind is not to die. 

"There is no death ; what seems so is transition ; 
This life of mortal breath 
Is but a suburb of the life Elysian, 
Whose portals we call death." 

F. D. McDowell. 




JOHN CARLISLE KILGO 




'HE Methodist Church since the Civil War has 
furnished a full share of the notable men of 
the South. Without disparaging other 
churches, one may say that this body has made 
in the new time a most remarkable advance in 
the general social condition of its membership. 
Formerly it was composed chiefly of the middle classes; to-day 
there is hardly a center of industry and thought in which it has 
not its due proportion of the leading men. Its democracy, its 
devotion, its willingness and sacrifice, its freedom from preju- 
dices, all have combined to make the post-bellum period of our 
history a day of prosperity for that group of people who are 
embraced within its fold. 

On the flood-tide of this era of prosperity is the figure of John 
Carlisle Kilgo. In a peculiar sense he is a child of the ancient 
and militant type of Methodism ; in a sense equally as significant 
he stands as an exponent of the newer type. If one painted the 
life out of which his career sprung, he would speak of pioneer 
Methodism; if one described the conditions in which he moves 
as a leader of his church, he would describe the Methodism of 
the present. It is not often that we find a man who unites in his 
own career the best feature of his associations in the two halves 
of an entire century. 

Rev. James T. Kilgo was a Methodist minister of the pioneer 



350 NORTH CAROLINA 

type. His grandfather, Isaac Kilgo, and his father, William 
Kilgo, were born in Wake County, North Carolina. About 1809 
they moved to South Carolina, and here, in Chester County, 
James T. Kilgo was born, February 16, 1820. As the name indi- 
cated, they were descended from the Scotch-Irish stock, which 
was so widely distributed in the middle and western parts of 
North Carolina. In early life James T. Kilgo became a Metho- 
dist minister. His early education had not been good. With 
characteristic resolution he set out to remedy the defect, which 
had been due to poor school facilities. He became his own 
teacher while following his daily tasks. He did this so well that 
when he became a minister he was known among his colleagues 
as a preacher of exceedingly logical and sound methods. 

Catherine Mason, to whom, in 1855, he was to link his life, was 
born in Fairfield County, South Carolina. Her father was related 
to the prominent Mason family of Virginia; her mother was of 
a Dutch family named Wyrick. From this union of Virginia 
gentleness and Dutch persistence she inherited a remarkable dis- 
position. Her mother, who had been left a widow early in life, 
was in good circumstances, and managed her plantation with the 
ability of an experienced person of business. She was a pillar of 
the small Methodist Church in the community. 

It was July 22, 1861, when John Carlisle Kilgo, the second son 
of this union, was born. The place was the little brick parsonage 
in Laurens, South Carolina; the day was the day after that on 
which the first battle of Bull Run was fought. The struggle which 
was then inaugurated pulled down a great social fabric and 
brought dismay to many innocent hearts ; but the boy whose life 
began on the following day was destined to go far toward rebuild- 
ing the fragments into a more attractive structure than that which 
was destroyed. 

The early life of John Carlisle Kilgo was not different from 
that of most Southern boys of the present generation. He was of 
a jovial disposition, keen at a retort, fond of sports, strong of 
body, and a good teller of a story. He went to the local schools 
which the itinerant life of the Methodist preacher brought within 



JOHN CARLISLE KILGO 351 

his reach. He came in his father's house into contact with a vital 
and pervading type of piety, which made a strong impression 
on his nature. Among the strongest impressions of his earliest 
youth was the conviction that it was his duty to enter the ministry. 
Like many young men who have felt such a conviction, he began 
by resisting it ; but at length it mastered him, and he surrendered 
his life to the cause in which his father had striven so well. It is 
a tribute to the faithfulness of that father, that of his three sons 
who reached maturity, all became ministers. 

In October, 1880, John Carlisle Kilgo entered the sophomore 
class at Wofford College, Spartanburg, South Carolina. But at 
the end of the year he was overtaken with a disease of the eyes, 
which made it necessary for him to suspend a life of close studious- 
ness. He turned to school-teaching for a year; and it was while 
thus employed that he resolved all his doubts of his profession in 
life by deciding to become a minister. In May, 1882, he was 
licensed to preach, and in December of the same year he joined the 
South Carolina Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, 
South. His first charge was junior preacher on the Bennettsville 
circuit. 

Before he took up his work in his new station, he made a trip 
to Gaffney, South Carolina. Here he had lived before he entered 
college. Here he had given his heart to Miss Fannie N. Turner, 
daughter of a substantial citizen, and here, on December 20, 1882, 
he took her for his life's companion. Not many junior preachers 
are willing to marry before they have prospects of promotion to 
charges which pay considerable salaries. But it was character- 
istic of this one that he was willing to trust his fate and 
that of her whom he loved best to the Providence which he 
taught others to believe to be sufficient in all things. Out of 
this very faith was born the quality which gave success to its 
assumptions. 

Dr. Kilgo is a man of striking originality. His mind goes 
straight to the center of truth. No opinions of the masters have 
ever dazzled him into accepting what his own penetration does 
not show him to be true. He is deeply religious without being 



352 NORTH CAROLINA 

dogmatic, and practical without being mechanical. He has a 
sincere appreciation of good literature without being caught by 
the rricks of literary style. He had in him from the hand of 
nature a mind which was destined to master other minds, both 
by its wider insight into truth and by its compelling influence over 
the wills of those with whom it came into touch. 

The task of a young preacher is to master his work. He must 
be preacher and pastor, instructor of his flock in religious thought, 
and friend and leader in the difficulties of life. In both of these 
Dr. Kilgo has ever been pre-eminent. But he was not satisfied 
to fill the mere measure of the demands of the situation in which 
he was placed. He was a studious preacher. He ran into the 
realms of literature. By his own efforts he was able to remedy 
the loss which he had suffered from his interrupted college course. 
This success fixed him for a career outside of the pastorate. His 
pastoral charges were : Bennettsville circuit, 1882-84 ; Timmons- 
ville circuit, 1884-86; Rock Hill circuit, 1886-87; and Little Rock 
circuit, 1887-88. 

It was at this time that his life became connected with the cause 
of education. In 1888 he was appointed financial agent at 
Wofford College. His new duties were to raise an endowment 
fund for the college out of the vast body of Methodists in the 
conference. At the end of two years $50,000 had been raised. 
Then there was a vacancy in the college faculty in the chair of 
philosophy and political economy, and he was invited to fill it. The 
chair had been previously filled by Dr. A. Coke Smith, a man of 
such extraordinary capacity that he has since been made a Metho- 
dist bishop. The duties of this position were discharged by the new 
incumbent with eminent success. In 1892 he was given by Wofford 
the degree of Master of Arts in token of his attainments in scholar- 
ship. On the affections of the whole college community he 
fastened himself with that peculiar personal loyalty which has 
ever characterized his relation with his friends. While he was a 
professor at Wofford, the presiding elder of the Spartanburg 
district was overtaken by death. Dr. Kilgo filled out the rest 
of the year in his stead, and gave most of his salary to the widow 



JOHN CARLISLE KILGO 353 

of the dead man. This work he did in addition to his duties at 
the college. 

In 1894 he was invited to become president of Trinity College, 
at Durham, North Carolina. There was much in the position 
to make it undesirable. The college had recently been the scene 
of certain difficulties, which had left it torn asunder with strife 
and discouragement. To Dr. Kilgo, however, the offer came as 
a call of duty, and he accepted it. Into his new task he put all of 
himself, so that it is possible to say that from that day to this 
the story of Trinity College has been the story of his own life. 
Also, the achievement of Trinity in that period is the mark of 
his own achievement. He found the college with 9 men in its 
faculty, 153 students in its class-rooms, and with a plant worth 
$135,000. To-day, when he has served out ten years of his 
presidency, the faculty contains 30 members, the students number 
415, and a fair estimate of the value of the plant is $1,100,000. 
Without question, no other college in the South has made so great 
an advance. 

But Dr. Kilgo's greatest service at Trinity has been in his 
educational policy. This policy may be summed up in four 
principles : 

1. Christian Education. — By this he means an education pene- 
trated with the spirit of Christianity, an education in which the 
purpose of the student is first of all brought into subjection to 
the principles of Christianity, in which the methods employed 
by Christ himself are the standards of pedagogy, in which rever- 
ence for God underlies all search for truth, and in which teacher 
and student should be filled with the spirit of service. He believes 
that this kind of education is likely to be given in those institutions 
only in which the churches exercise oversight. 

2. Honest Standards of Instruction. — He believes that a col- 
lege is immoral which employs tricks of advertising to give the 
public a false impression as to its curriculum; that standards of 
admission ought to be high and honestly enforced ; that students 
ought not to be told that they are educated until they are edu- 
cated, and that the craze for attendance which has seized some 



354 NORTH CAROLINA 

institutions is demoralizing the educational world. All these he 
has taught and enforced at Trinity, regardless of criticisms from 
the outside world. 

3. Breadth of Mind. — He has taught that education should not 
be provincial; that patriotism should not be sectional; that re- 
ligion should not be sectarian, and that truth should be sought, 
whatever her guise. An illustration of his spirit is seen in an 
incident which marked its culmination. One of the recent gifts 
of a graduating class to the college was a flag-pole, with an 
American flag at the top, and at the bottom an illustration which 
reads, "God bless our country." 

4. Freedom of Thought. — He has always taught that men 
should not be forbidden to speak what they think ; that the bow- 
ing before adverse opinion shrivels the soul; that the tyranny of 
conservation crushes the spirit of a people, and that not to think 
is to die. In one notable crisis he asserted these principles in 
actual affairs, and won a victory for academic freedom which 
received the applause of every college in America. 

In Dr. Kilgo's career at Trinity he has been the object of some 
fierce criticism. Announcing a program so distinctive, it was 
natural that he should have opposition. But in all of it he has 
kept steadily at his plans. He has retained the support of those 
who knew most clearly what he was doing. His administra- 
tion has been crowned with the success of Trinity. It has recom- 
mended itself to the minds of thoughtful business men and edu- 
cators. One of the first great gifts the college received during 
his presidency was accompanied with the statement that the gift 
was made chiefly because the donor had confidence in the policy 
of the administration. 

Dr. Kilgo has had many tokens of the esteem in which he is 
held by his church. Thrice — in 1894, in 1898 and in 1902 — he has 
been a delegate to the general conference of his church. In 1901 
he was sent by his church as a delegate to the GEcumenical Con- 
ference of Methodists in London. In 1904 he was sent by the 
same body as their fraternal delegate to the General Conference 
of the Northern Methodists at Los Angeles, California, and his 



JOHN CARLISLE KILGO 355 

address there was received with unusual applause. In 1895 he 
received the degree of Doctor of Divinity from both Wofford and 
Randolph-Macon colleges. 

As an orator, Dr. Kilgo has few equals in the South. He 
speaks with fluent and powerful manner, and with great personal 
magnetism. But he is always surest to please by the fearlessness 
and clear-cut truthfulness of his ideas. He has the elements of 
the prophet in his attitude to social problems. He compels by 
his mastery of all the world of moral truth. In all of his success, 
he is still a simple Methodist preacher, true to the vows of his 
early manhood. He has often been mentioned as a person who 
is likely to be made a bishop, and in two general conferences he 
has received votes for that office. To all such overtures he has 
continually replied that his work is that of education, and that 
he prefers to remain in that field. Those who know him well know 
that this is the simple truth. 

In his family life Dr. Kilgo is happily situated. Five children 
have been born to him, four of whom still survive : Walter Bissell, 
who died at the age of six; Edna Clyde, James Luther, 
Fannie, and John Carlisle, Jr. In his home he is studious, 
courteous and unstintedly hospitable. With his friends he is 
widely popular for his companionable qualities. He is devoted to 
reading, confining himself to the books written by the strongest 
and most serious persons. With frivolous literature he has no 
patience. In politics he is an independent, and as a citizen he has 
a serious sense of his obligation to serve the State in the manner 
which seems to him the best. He is singularly free from party 
bitterness. Those who know him well believe him to be one of 
the strongest forces for moral and social uplift in North Carolina. 

/. 5. Bassett. 





THEODORE BRYANT KINGSBURY 

[R. THEODORE BRYANT KINGSBURY, 
distinguished as a writer and literary critic, 
and the most accompHshed hterateur of the 
State, was born in Raleigh on the 29th of 
August, 1828. The Kingsbury family is one 
of the oldest of this country. Henry Kings- 
bury came from England with Governor Winthrop in 1630, and 
he and his wife were of the twenty-six members of the first 
church organized at Boston. They were Puritans, and that settle- 
ment is not to be confounded with the Plymouth Rock adventurers, 
from whom they widely differed in principle and moral practice ; 
and the Kingsbury family has furnished from among its members 
many excellent citizens, who have adorned the bench and filled 
with credit high positions in the military service of their country. 
Dr. Kingsbury's father, Mr. Russell Kingsbury, was a merchant 
and farmer, who lived in Granville County, and was highly 
esteemed for his probity and excellence of character. He was a 
man of remarkable judgment, and was energetic and successful 
in his business. Public life had no attractions for him, and he 
did not seek political preferment, but he served as town com- 
missioner at Oxford, and was trustee of the Oxford male and 
female academies, and generally manifested an interest in what- 
ever concerned the welfare of his community. He was a close 
reader of books, including some of the best authors. His wife, 



THEODORE BRYANT KINGSBURY 357 

Mary Sumner Bryant, was a native of Scotland Neck, of English 
descent, a lady of rare loveliness of character, but she died in 1836, 
when Dr. Kingsbury was just eight years of age, and he was 
deprived of her motherly care during that period of his life when 
her influence would have been most beneficial to him. She was a 
most consecrated member of the Episcopal Church, and died in 
great peace and resignation. 

In his early youth Dr. Kingsbury was somewhat delicate, his 
constitution not being very robust. His inclination was for books 
rather than for the sports that engaged the attention of his young 
companions, and from the age of nine years he became a habitual 
reader, his books being selected ordinarily with care, and of such 
an interesting character as to stimulate a desire for solid reading. 
He was a pupil at the Oxford Male Academy and at the Lovejoy 
Military Academy at Raleigh, where he was the captain of the 
corps of cadets, the commandant at the school being at that time 
Mr. W. F. Disbrow of New York, who was a roommate of General 
Grant at West Point. Being prepared for college, he entered 
the University of North Carolina, but did not remain to gradu- 
ate. His father desired that he should read law, and wished that 
upon leaving the University he should attend the Harvard Law 
School, and as an inducement for him to pursue that vocation, 
offered to bestow on him an ample annuity until he should have 
gained a lucrative practice ; but Dr. Kingsbury did not have con- 
fidence in his own ability, and thinking that he would not attain 
distinction in that profession, and being disinclined to become a 
mere pettifogger, he preferred to cast his life on other lines. He 
therefore turned his attention to merchandising, which he fol- 
lowed for seven years, but in the meantime literature wooed him, 
and he published a literary weekly at Oxford, North Carolina, 
under the name of The Leisure Hour, that attracted much atten- 
tion and drew high commendation from John R. Thompson, editor 
of the Southern Literary Messenger, then the most meritorious 
literary magazine published in the South, and from Paul H. 
Hayne, the poet, then editing Russell's Magazine, a large monthly 
of genuine merit published in Charleston, South Carolina, and 



358 NORTH CAROLINA 

other gifted editors. In June of 1859 he was elected to the chair 
of literature in Trinity College, but his thoughts and religious 
fervor led him into another field, and he entered into the ministry, 
and continued in that calling until July, 1869. It was about that 
time, in March, 1869, that he was employed as an associate editor 
of the Raleigh Sentinel, then conducted by Hon. Josiah Turner, 
and for two years and more he continued in that capacity. While 
on the Sentinel, a momentous crisis in public affairs was precipi- 
tated by the Republican administration of the State, and Josiah 
Turner, with unequalled boldness, made the Sentinel the champion 
of free government and of the traditional liberties of the people. 
No greater service was ever performed by any press than that 
rendered to the people of North Carolina by the Sentinel. In 
those exciting and perilous times Dr. Kingsbury wrote much, and 
with strength and patriotic fervor, for the editorial columns of 
the paper, and he deserves to share in the great fame that is so 
justly awarded to Josiah Turner for his bold and resolute editorial 
work. On three occasions Dr. Kingsbury declined the editorship 
of the North Carolina Christian Advocate, but he edited Our 
Living and Our Dead for several years, a publication of a high 
order of merit, begun by Colonel S. D. Pool, and he also edited 
the Educational Journal in 1874 and 1875, doing much to advance 
the cause of public education at that time in North Carolina. His 
contributions to Our Living and Our Dead were noteworthy, 
especially his literary criticisms. Then in the vigor of manhood, 
with a fine imagination and excellent taste, he discussed literary 
subjects admirably, his dissertations on Tennyson and Sainte 
Beuve being of especial excellence. For a year or two he was 
unemployed, and proposed to write the history of the State, for 
which he was well fitted by his habits of industry and his literary 
attainments. Circumstances prevented the important undertaking, 
and about that time he was offered a position as editorial writer 
on the Wilmington Star, and, accepting it, he began a long career 
of journalism that gave great satisfaction to his friends and the 
patrons of that paper. He continued with the Star for nearly 
thirteen years, when he became editor of the Wilmington 



THEODORE BRYANT KINGSBURY 359 

Messenger, with which he remained for about as long a period, 
having had an experience in journalism at Wilmington of more 
than a quarter of a century. As an editor, Dr. Kingsbury brought 
to the discussion of his subjects a large store of varied learning, 
and his productions were read with great avidity by a host of 
admirers, and received the warm commendation of many of 
the ablest men and best thinkers of the State. In particular were 
his literary articles valued by the most cultured among the readers 
of his papers. The teachers and the professors of the various 
colleges and the lawyers and ministers of every denomination 
were generous and unstinted in their praise, while his work was 
not without the appreciation of the editorial fraternity. His style 
was clear and perspicuous, elegant in diction and remarkably 
forceful, and there ran through all of his editorials a strain of 
patriotism, a love of North Carolina, an appreciation of the ex- 
cellence of her great men, that was a distinctive characteristic of 
his work. It had been his fortune to have known many of 
the most important persons of the previous generation, and with 
pride and pleasure he pointed out time and again their respective 
merits, and spread on the record their great deeds, which entitled 
them to fame and to the admiration of their countrymen. In 
particular was he as an editor at pains to perpetuate the memory 
of the great feats performed by the North Carolina soldiers in 
the Civil War, and to instil into the minds of the present genera- 
tion a correct understanding of the causes that led to the bloody 
contest. Indeed, no other editor of the State has been more 
patriotic than Dr. Kingsbury, and none has excelled him in ele- 
gance of diction, in a large vocabulary and literary merit. He 
retired from the Messenger in May, 1902, and since that time he 
has contributed weekly articles of great merit on a large variety 
of subjects to the Sunday's issue of the News and Observer. 
Distinctly, Dr. Kingsbury has been a literary man of high polish 
and capacity, rather than a business man or politician. In his 
early days he was a Henry Clay Whig, all of his connections 
being members of that party, but he cared very little for the dis- 
cussion of political questions until the great matters that agi- 



36o NORTH CAROLINA 

tated the public mind in i860 challenged his earnest attention, 
and he then began to study the underlying principles of our 
Constitution, and became a Democrat, and has never wavered in 
his devotion to the principles of that party. But while rejoicing 
in the success of his party and the people of the State, he has 
never desired to share in party spoils. He had no ambition outside 
of his chosen field of work, and he declined to seek the office of 
superintendent of public instruction in 1876, when many of the 
newspapers brought his name forward in connection with that 
position ; and later, when all of the North Carolina Congressmen 
offered to secure his appointment to a desirable consulate in Eng- 
land, he again preferred to remain at his editorial desk. 

In his religious affiliations Dr. Kingsbury is a Methodist of 
the old Wesleyan kind, and he is not inclined to any additions 
to the simple forms and doctrines of the early church or any 
imitations borrowed from other denominations, although he pre- 
fers the Presbyterian polity as a system of church government. 
While his reading has been in a wide and varied field, he has 
never omitted his study of the New Testament, having during 
the last sixteen and one-half years read the New Testament 
through eighty-four times. For some years in his boyhood he 
kept a memorandum of what reading he had done, and in one 
month he read 3300 pages. When a lad he read Plutarch's Lives, 
Hume, continued by Smollett and Miller, portions of Josephus, 
Rollin and Shakespeare, and parts of Sparks's American Biogra- 
phy, in over twenty volumes, and many other solid books. 
Indeed, but few men have read with more avidity the great books 
of the English language. In his seventy-sixth year he was read- 
ing Shakespeare, Froude's Caesar, Macaulay's Essays, Wilson's 
"Story of France," containing 1800 pages, and similar standard 
works, and he still finds time to read some of the best current 
literature, and especially is he interested in criticisms of the books 
that attain wide reputation and have large editions, as they illus- 
trate the prevailing tendencies among the reading people of the 
country. Indeed, in familiarity with books, in acquaintance with 
the best thoughts of the great English masters, and in literary 



THEODORE BRYANT KINGSBURY 361 

excellence, Dr. Kingsbury has a unique position among North 
Carolinians, which is the more noteworthy, as during his long 
editorial career his daily labor has been not only exacting, but 
immense. 

Although Dr. Kingsbury has written so much that if compiled 
his writings would fill a hundred volumes perhaps, yet he has 
never appeared in the role of an author, except in 1867 he pub- 
lished a volume of about 300 pages on the subject of Baptism, 
and in 1876 he wrote a small guide-book to the Philadelphia Cen- 
tennial containing about 100 pages. He has also delivered some 
addresses, one of which was published in 1882, on the Life and 
Character of Rev. Thomas G. Lowe, which was an oration 
masterful at many points, and while an exquisite tribute to that 
eloquent preacher, is itself a speaking witness bearing testimony 
to the taste and oratory of Dr. Kingsbury. Dr. Kingsbury, in 
reply to a question if he could offer any suggestions that might 
be helpful to young men, says : "I advise all young men to avoid 
drink, the use of tobacco, and to cultivate habits of economy; to 
avoid debts ; to study the fundamentals of the American Gov- 
ernment, and to have nothing to do with agrarians, demagogues 
and centralizers, men who favor a government of the rich and 
aristocrats." 

On May i, 1851, Dr. Kingsbury was happily married to Miss 
Sallie Jones Atkinson, a daughter of General Roger P. Atkinson 
of Virginia and of one of the loveliest of North Carolina ladies. 
Miss Margaret M. Littlejohn of Oxford. His beautiful wife 
bore him nine children, of whom five now survive, and his home 
life presents an example of affection rarely found with those 
devoted to literature. 

In 1868 Wake Forest conferred the degree of D.D. upon him, 
which he never used after retiring from the ministry, and he was 
honored by the University of North Carolina, his Alma Mater, 
with the degree of LL.D. in 1888. He was three times tendered 
invitations to deliver addresses before the students of the Uni- 
versity of North Carolina, but declined for reasons that were 
paramount. He wrote four articles for the Wake Forest Student 



362 NORTH CAROLINA 

some six or seven years ago, but never contributed to any other 
monthly save the two edited by himself. 

While a daily reader of the best poetry — Homer, ^schylus, 
Sophocles, Euripides, Dante and Goethe, including much of the 
English poetry from Chaucer to Swinburne — he could never write 
a line of poetry himself. In the last ten years he has confined him- 
self chiefly to Shakespeare, Milton and Tennyson, his supreme 
favorites; but he has also read Byron, Wordsworth, Matthew 
Arnold, Swinburne, Robert Browning in parts. Burns, Scott, 
Goethe, Dante, parts of Chaucer, Spencer, and some others. In 
that time he has read Shakespeare, including the sonnets, four 
times, and Tennyson as often. 

In the "Bibliographical Contributions of Harvard University," 
edited by Justin Winsor, librarian, there are in No. 48 twelve 
contributions by Dr. Kingsbury, all produced in 1875, and all to 
be found in the "Bibliography of the Historical Literature of 
North Carolina," prepared by Stephen B. Weeks, published in 
1895. The selections are all historical. There is also a "Con-: 
tribution" added of an oration on Rev. Thomas G. Lowe, delivered 
in 1882. These constitute really but a fraction of the historic 
and biographic productions by Dr. Kingsbury in the last forty 
years. 

5. A. Ashe. 






ALEXANDER LILLINGTON 

' ITHOUT doubt, among the earlier settlers of 
Albemarle were many men of considerable 
means, high standing and excellent capabilities. 
Lawson, who wrote some fifty years later than 
the original settlement, says that there came 
to Albemarle at first several substantial planters 
from Virginia and other plantations, and that the fame of this 
new-discovered summer country drew a considerable number of 
families thereto ; and that there was an early trade with New 
England men and Bermudians. At that time New England had 
the carrying trade of the Southern colonies and of Bermuda. 
Whether the Lillingtons came direct from New England or from 
Bermuda is unknown. There are some statements that favor the 
latter surmise. It is stated that three brothers of that name came 
to Massachusetts, and were men of enterprise and means, and 
went thence to the Barbadoes. Of the subject of this sketch it 
is said that he was born in 1643; ^hat on June 11, 1668, he was 
married to EHzabeth Cooper by the Rev. Mr. Taylor, by whom 
he had two sons. It appears that on June 13, 1675, he was married 
again to Sara James, a daughter of Thomas James, by Rev. John 
Wood. In the Genealogical Register of Massachusetts there 
is a deed, dated 3d of August, 1675, beginning as follows: "I, 
Alexander Lillington, of Albemarle County, in the province of 
Carolina, planter, and now present in Salem, in New England, 



364 NORTH CAROLINA 

being the husband of Sara James, the daughter of Thomas 
James, deceased," etc. 

By the second marriage Major LiHington had daughters, who 
married Colonel Sam Swann, Hon. Henderson Walker, Hon. 
Edward Moseley, John Porter; and a son, John, who married 
Sara Porter; and Mrs. Swann married Colonel Maurice Moore; 
and the descendants of Major LiHington and Sara James have 
in every generation been among the foremost North Carolinians. 

On March 19, 1695, Major LiHington was married for the third 
time to Ann Steward, by whom, however, he had no issue. He 
died in September, 1697. 

It seems that he came to Albemarle prior to his first marriage 
in 1668. At first it is said he engaged in shipbuilding. In the 
troubles known as the Culpeper Rebellion, when George Durant 
and his associates undertook to prevent the collection of the tax 
on tobacco exported to New England, Major LiHington was an 
active participant. He was a member of the "free parliament" 
then elected, and otherwise threw his influence on the side of the 
rebels. When John Harvey was appointed governor in 1679, he 
commissioned LiHington as a jtistice of the peace; and from that 
time until his death he appears to have presided over the Precinct 
Court of Perquimans Precinct. 

Hawks in his History states that he was deputy governor in 
1693, and Hathaway, in the "North Carolina Historical and Gene- 
alogical Register," presumably quoting from the unpublished 
records stored at Edenton, says that he was deputy governor 
1693-95, ^"d president of the governor's CouncH in 1697. Chal- 
mers's Annals also states that he was deputy governor in 1693, 
and that his administration was very beneficial to the settlement. 
The writer, however, has not been able to find any official record 
of Major LiHington ever being deputy governor or president of 
the Council. That he was an important factor in the life and 
history of Albemarle in his generation is nevertheless very evi- 
dent, and he exerted an admirable influence, and deservedly ranks 
among the most influential and important of the early colonial 
characters. 5". A. Ashe. 



M' 






PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 




■ AUL BARRINGER MEANS was born at the 
home of his parents, called Bellevue, two and 
a half miles west of Concord, in the county of 
Cabarrus, on April 7, 1845. Bellevue was a nota- 
ble plantation, the nucleus of which once be- 
longed to his mother's father. Her husband. Gen- 
eral William C. Means, was a man of energy and determination, 
a most enlightened and progressive farmer, who bought the orig- 
inal plantation and added to it by purchase until he owned about 
3000 acres. Although he had overseers, yet constantly from earli- 
est morning light, he was personally watchful over every detail 
of crop cultivation. He introduced in the early fifties the first 
grain mower and reaper in that section of the country, and it was 
interesting to see the swarms of spectators from farms far and 
near admiringly watching the golden grain and grasses falling 
before them. He was a warm friend to internal improvements, 
subscribed liberally to the stock of the North Carolina Railroad, 
was one of the charter commissioners for creating the capital 
stock, was a member of the first Board of Directors and took a 
prominent part in the management of its affairs during the long 
term of his service as a director. He was, with General Paul 
Barringer and other progressive men, a large stockholder in the 
Concord cotton factory, one .of the first in the South, which was 
built of brick in 1839, and began work in 1840. It was not a 



366 NORTH CAROLINA 

financial success then, but a great blessing during the War of 
Secession. And this identical factory is to-day "Mill No. i" of 
the great and prosperous plant in Concord, of the Odell Manu- 
facturing Company. The stockholders and builders of this fac- 
tory in 1839 were fifty years or more ahead of their age; which, 
for financial success, is quite as unfortunate as to be behind "the 
spirit of the age." He was decidedly a warm friend of educa- 
tion. He gave his six sons and one daughter the best education 
our State afforded. At the first election held in Concord, in the 
early seventies, on the subject of schools, he and his son Paul 
gave the only affirmative votes given by members of the Demo- 
cratic Party. When the Lutheran Synod, about 1850, was raising 
funds for the establishment of a college, he advised to locate it 
in Concord rather than at Mount Pleasant, and offered, if his 
advice should be accepted, to donate as much as all the others 
combined. 

An Old Line Whig, he clung to the Union until Lincoln's call 
for troops. When a meeting was held in Concord to raise funds 
for the equipment of the very first volunteers, he attended, and 
inquiring what was the largest subscription, doubled it amid great 
applause. His title of general came from a major-generalship of 
militia before the war. He was a devoted lover of wife and 
children; indeed, when his boys left home for school and college 
they were supplied with pocket money too liberally to afford prac- 
tical lessons in economic habits. Paul remembered the contrast, 
when, in Lee's army, he fared on a diet of a few wild strawberries 
and a cold potato, and on a piece of beef roasted on the end of 
a ramrod and eaten without salt or bread, as he did the night 
following the afternoon he was wounded at Kennon's Landing 
on James River. 

General Means's grandfather, John Means, came to America 
in 1772, when his son William, the grandfather of our subject, 
born October 27, 1769, was three years old. The mother of 
General Means was Isabella Work of Iredell County, the daughter 
of Robert Work. General Means was born September 12, 1801, 
and died September S, 1880. 



PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 367 

The mother of Paul Barringer Means was Catherine Jane, 
daughter of General Paul Barringer and Elizabeth Brandon. 
And her son Paul was named for her father. She was born 
August 9, 1824, and died at Bellevue, June 4, 1874. In 
her obituary, published in the North Carolina Presbyterian, June 
24, 1874, it is said: 

"Her father's immediate family were all characterized by the true 
virtues of Christianity and intelligence; and though her brothers have all 
obtained eminence in the Church and State, and though her sisters, 
adorned by all the virtues of their sex, were highly esteemed and respected 
by all who knew them, as an intelligent Christian, as a wife, as a mother, 
as a woman in woman's sphere, she was the peer of them all." 

The biographies of her father and of her grandfather and of 
four of her brothers appear in this same volume. 

Besides Paul, the children of General and Mrs. Means who 
arrived at maturity were, in the order of their birth, the follow- 
ing: James Moreau, born November 3, 1846, married Miss Bettie 
Wilson Nibbs, Houston, Texas, December 26, 1882 ; Robert Work, 
born May 24, 1848, died January 29, 1876 ; William Gaston, born 
February 23, 1850, married Miss Corallie Bullock of Mississippi, 
December 16, 1874; Mary Elizabeth, born May 25, 1851, married 
Rev. Thomas Chalmers Johnson of Mississippi, December 24, 
1872, and died September i, 1877; George Washington, born 
June 25, 1858, married Miss Lulu Kate Bikle, December 23, 
1879; and Victor Clay Barringer, born May 18, i860. 

Mrs. Means managed her household wisely, firmly and tenderly, 
and her children look back to her as the chief formative influence 
of their characters. 

The early years of Paul Barringer Means were spent in rural 
pursuits. His father was of eminently practical temperament, 
and although he owned many slaves, required his sons to lend a 
hand in farm and home work when needed. Paul, therefore, grew 
up healthy and athletic and abhorring indolence. He was always 
fond of books and peculiarly devoted to the society of his mother, 
revering her rare virtues and intelligence. His home was a 
happy one, free from care and the perplexities of poverty. He 



368 NORTH CAROLINA 

learned the rudiments at a neighboring school, went up higher at 
the Concord Academy and higher still at the excellent preparatory 
school of Rev. Dr. Alexander Wilson at Melville, in Alamance 
County, an institution on the same lofty plane as that of William 
J. Bingham at the Oaks. He then, in 1862, along with Julian S. 
Carr, Eugene Morehead, and twenty-one others, became a member 
of the Freshman Class of the University. 

Although, like most Southern youths, he ardently longed to 
be in the blaze of battle, on the urgency and requirement of his 
parents, he continued in the pursuit of collegiate studies. For 
many months President Davis exempted college boys from the 
conscription law, but the necessity for troops put an end to this 
favor. Nearly all liable to the law preferred to be volunteers, be- 
cause privileges were allowed them in the selection of regiments. 
Paul Means, on October i, 1863, entered the army, in the Sixty- 
third Regiment (Fifth North Carolina Cavalry), in order to be 
with his friend, Shakespeare Harris, and at his earnest request. 
His nearsightedness entitled him to an exemption, but he declined 
to avail himself of this. It, however, prevented his attaining the 
object of his desires, which was to becom.e, with Harris, a mem- 
ber of Shadburne's famous scouts. After about a year's experi- 
ence as a private of Company F, Fifth North Carolina Cavalry, he 
was selected as courier at General Barringer's headquarters, in 
September, 1864. He was a gallant and conspicuous participant 
in most of the engagements and movements of that eventful 
period, sharing in the hardships and trials, victories and defeats 
of the famous North Carolina Cavalry Brigade until the end of 
his war career at Namozine Church, April 3, 1865. 

He did not escape unscathed. He was shot through the left 
shoulder in a terrible and bloody charge on a fort at Kennon's 
Landing or Wilson's Wharf, on May 24, 1864, and was unable 
to rejoin his command until September. He had a slight wound 
in the arm, and his horse was shot in the awful fight at Chamber- 
lain's Run, March 31, 1865, the furiousness of which is indicated 
by the great number killed and wounded, and the fact that 
172 balls of the enemy struck a tree of moderate size within seven 



PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 369 

feet upward from its base, right where Means was wounded and 
his horse shot, as certified, from actual count, by D. B. Cohrane 
of his regiment, now cashier of the Concord National Bank. He 
received wounds in the left foot and in the right thigh at Namo- 
zine Church, and was furloughed for thirty days from the hospital 
at Danville, Virginia. Before the expiration of the furlough the 
army of Northern Virginia was surrendered. 

On the restoration of peace, in 1865, he determined to finish 
his education at the University. He entered the Sophomore Class. 
He was especially active as a debater in the Dialectic Society, 
and began here to display the characteristic which has distin- 
guished him through life, enthusiastic advocacy of the side which 
he thought right of every question before that body. He made no 
special effort to attain the highest honor in the curriculum studies, 
as his military life had given him a taste for more practical read- 
ing. Still, he shared the first distinction in Latin with F. H. 
Busbee, and graduated with honor at the Commencement of 1868, 
last under the old regime, and the last over which President Swain 
presided. His graduating speech was on Poland, and the woes of 
that unhappy country were feelingly depicted. He was fortunate 
in the association and rivalry of strong men. With him on the 
stage were Colonel W. H. S. Burgwyn, Fabius H. Busbee, 
Eugene L. Morehead, James W. Harper, William S. Pearson, 
Augustus W. Graham, Charles Fetter, William D. Horner, Ike 
R. Strayhorn and Judge Thomas A. McNeill, all of whom attained 
prominence in life. The faculty declared in their report that in 
years, maturity of intellect and extent of attainments, the class 
was above the average of their predecessors. 

Having his A.B. diploma in hand, Paul determined, at the 
request of his father, to adopt the profession of the law. He 
accordingly, in the fall of 1868, went to the famous law school of 
Chief Justice Pearson at Richmond Hill, in Yadkin County. He 
obtained his license to practice in January, 1870, and on the 
17th of that month opened an office at Concord, where he has 
since lived. 

For a time he engaged in general practice, but since 1876 his 



370 NORTH CAROLINA 

chief work has been in corporation law. From that date he has 
been continuously counsel for the Richmond & Danville, the West 
Point Terminal and the Southern Railway Companies, except when 
he was a member of the State Senate of 1885 and of 1889. He 
thought it possible that the interests of those roads might be a 
matter of legislation, and hence gave up his employment during 
the sessions of 1885 and 1889. 

As a politican and legislator Colonel Means, while always a 
Democrat, has been singularly bold and aggressive, never swerv- 
ing from his convictions because of threatened unpoularity. When 
he was outvoted he nevertheless sustained the ticket nominated 
by his party, for the reason that, in his opinion, it was better 
on the whole than the opposite. For example, he strongly main- 
tained the gold standard when our State Democratic conventions 
and all the other members, except himself, of the State Demo- 
cratic Executive Committee, of which he has been continuously 
a member for twenty-nine years, followed Bryan in his advocacy 
of the double standard; and yet he cast his ballot for Bryan, 
because Bryan was nominated as a Democrat, and in his opinion 
the other principles of the Democratic Party were wiser than 
those of the Republican. He refused, however, to vote for the 
Populist electors on the Bryan ticket of 1896. 

He served as legislator in the House of Representatives in 
1874-75, and in the Senate in 1885 and 1889. In this capacity he 
aided actively and effectively in the passage of measures which 
have been of lasting benefit to the State. One was the act 
(p. 202, Laws of 1874-75) to compromise, commute and settle 
the State debt, substantially re-enacted in 1879, whereby the pub- 
lic credit was so restored that our four per cent, bonds are above 
par. The wisdom of these measures is justified by the fact that 
the very great majority of creditors accepted the offer as fair, 
considering the losses of the State. At the time Colonel Means 
worked and voted for this law his father was owner of thou- 
sands of dollars in the bonds so largely scaled by this act of 

1874-75- 
The call of the convention of 1875, with the view of rescuing 



PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 371 

certain counties from the control of majorities of a few white 
and many negro voters as they were in that day, under the Recon- 
struction Acts of Congress, and for effecting other needed amend- 
ments to the Constitution, was advocated and urged, pubhcly 
and privately by Colonel Means, although an overwhelming 
majority of the voters of his county did not agree with him. Time 
has justified his daring and independent course. 

He likewise ran counter to the wishes of a large majority of 
his immediate constituents and others in advocating for Cabarrus 
and other counties the repeal of the laws requiring fences around 
fields. The movement, at first violently opposed, has gained favor 
everywhere except in the mountain and swamp land counties. 
Much labor is saved for making crops, valuable trees rescued for 
lumber, and the breed of cattle improved. The Fence Law 
(Chapter 80, Acts 1874-75), drawn by him without, any precedent, 
and enacted by his energetic labors, is the identical law brought 
forward in the Code of 1883 and the present Revisal of 1905 of 
North Carolina. 

In September, 1885, an animated discussion arose between the 

Greensboro Patriot and the Daily Charlotte Observer as to who 

originated the "No Fence Law." The Patriot finally settled the 

question in favor of Colonel Means by publishing for the first 

time, more than five years after it was written, the following 

certificate : 

"Concord, N. C, January 27, 1880. 

"We, the undersigned, do hereby certify that Paul B. Means was the 

first man in Cabarrus County to advance the idea of the present Stock or 

Fence Law system; and that he was the first person to publicly advocate 

the Fence Law in this county, which he zealously did in the year 1870 

against a powerful opposition. And we do further certify that Paul B. 

Means has done more to secure the Fence Law system than any man in 

Cabarrus." 

The original of this certificate is now in the possession of 
Colonel Means, signed by many of the best-known living and 
dead men of Cabarrus. Some of the dead are N. G. White, W. H. 
Orchard, C. Mills, George W. Patterson, P. M. Morris, J. S. 
Fi.sher, D. S. Caldwell, and N. Slough, sheriff. Some of the 



372 NORTH CAROLINA 

living are R. S. Harris, M. M. Gillon, J. A. Rankin, P. B. Fetzer, 
M. L. Brown, and M. E. Castor. 

He, with others, is also entitled to the gratitude of the people 
from Buncombe to Murphy for successful exertions in procur- 
ing the passage of the Act of 1885 for the completion of the 
"Murphy branch of the Western North Carolina Railroad." But 
for that act, this important line would have been left unfinished 
on the hands of the State. At that time the Eastern counties 
had given unmistakable evidence that they were weary of paying 
taxes for its completion. It is not too much to say that the act 
prevented a break in party allegiance between the East and the 
mountain section. 

To no one legislator is the revival of the University and its 
present prosperity more due than to Colonel Means. In 1867 
the "Landscrip" received from the United States for the pur- 
pose of establishing an institution in which the leading object 
should be, without excluding the classics and other scientific 
studies, to teach the branches relating to agriculture and the 
mechanic arts, was given to the University, with the injunction to 
carry out the Act of Congress. The fund derived from the sale 
of the scrip had been invested in old and special tax State bonds 
and virtually lost entirely. After the University had been closed 
for over four years, the General Assembly, as allowed by an 
amendment to the Constitution, elected a new Board of Trustees, 
who petitioned the General Assembly to pay to the University 
annually a sum equal to the interest on the original amount of 
the investment. After spirited debate the bill passed the House 
by one majority and the Senate by nearly a two- thirds vote, and 
thus, with donations from friends of higher education added, the 
doors were opened in 1875. 

Colonel Means was a representative at this time and prompted 
by love for his Alma Mater, and the conviction that the interest 
of his State required the extension of higher education, he threw 
into the struggle all the ardor for which he is conspicuous. By 
his active private persuasion and speeches on the floor, together 
with others equally interested and zealous, the victory was gained. 



PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 373 

In 1885 was another successful struggle for the institution. 
The income was far too small for a creditable University. New 
professorships, apparatus and books were needed. The trustees 
asked for $15,000 more. The proposition was vehemently op- 
posed. At one time it seemed utterly hopeless. Colonel Means, 
then in the Senate, procured a meeting of Governor Scales, the 
president of the University, and some broad-minded members of 
the General Assembly at his rooms in the Yarborough House, the 
difficulties and dangers were discussed, and a plan of action for- 
mulated, which was carried into effect exactly as agreed on. 
Much argument and persuasive work were essential, in which 
his extraordinary energy and pluck were, as usual, in the fore- 
front. In this, as in the measures already mentioned, without a 
thought of the effect on his future career, he chose what was then 
the unpopular side, but has since met with general approval. 

He did not stop here. Having been elected a trustee of the 
University, a position he has held since 1873, he has, at his own ex- 
pense, attended during thirty-two years every meeting of the board, 
except two unavoidably missed, and aided in the deliberations, as 
well as by liberal subscriptions to its treasury. He has, besides 
making speeches in its behalf, repeatedly procured opportunities 
for its president to address the people for its benefit. No one 
has been more ready and zealous in pushing it to the front as the 
educational fountain of the State. 

And in the legislature of 1885 he was a strong advocate of 
the establishment of the present Agricultural and Mechanical Col- 
lege, and he has also always championed the Normal College at 
Greensboro. For many years he has been an ardent advocate and 
zealous worker for "Good Roads." In the Senate of 1885 he had 
enacted for Cabarrus County a road law, page 447, Acts 1885, 
which was long used in his county, and generally known as "The 
Means Road Law." And he is now, and has been ever since its 
organization, an active member of the "Good Roads Association 
for North Carolina." 

In addition to his service in both branches of the General As- 
sembly, Colonel Means was in 1872 delegate, with Senator Vance 



374 NORTH CAROLINA 

as colleague, to the National Democratic Convention at Balti- 
more, which nominated Greeley, and to the convention at Cin- 
cinnati in 1880 ; a delegate from the State at large to the National 
Convention at St. Louis in 1888; district delegate to the conven- 
tion at Chicago in 1892, which nominated Cleveland a third time, 
and lastly to the convention at St. Louis in 1904. In 1889 he 
was a delegate from this State at the centennial anniversary of 
the inauguration of Washington as President of the United 
States. His military title was obtained by being appointed aide- 
de-camp to Governor Vance and his successor. Governor Jarvis. 

As an author Colonel Means wields a clear and vigorous pen. 
His history of the Sixty-third Regiment of North Carolina State 
Troops, also called the Fifth North Carolina Cavalry, written for 
the collection of regimental histories published under the direc- 
tion of Chief Justice Clark, possesses great merit as a truthful 
narrative of one of the most daring regiments in our army. It 
met with the commendation and admiration of many of the officers 
of the great "North Carolina Cavalry Brigade," especially also of the 
living officers and men of the Fifth North Carolina Cavalry and 
other veterans of the war. He has also published in the Charlotte 
Observer of May 23, 1895, and August 9, 1896, strong papers 
against the course of the Democratic Party on free silver. He 
has, moreover, ventured into the field of metaphysics, having 
contributed to the same paper an essay on Soul Science, or the 
True Psychology, August 23, 1903, which is an argument that 
the soul is the mind and that Satan's spirit is the "carnal mind." 

Colonel Means was late in entering the matrimonial state. On 
November 27, 1894, he led to the altar a distant relative, the great- 
great-granddaughter of his own great-grandfather, John Paul 
Barringer and his first wife, Ann Elizabeth Iseman of Phila- 
delphia. Their daughter Catherine had two husbands, John 
Phifer and George Savitz (or Savage), Jr. Thus Mrs. Paul 
Barringer Means, who was Moselle Partee Foard, daughter of 
Major Robert Wyatt Foard of Concord, North Carolina, reunited 
the two branches of this family after more than a century of 
separation. The family record of Mrs. Means is this : John Paul 



PAUL BARRINGER MEANS 375 

Barringer's daughter Catherine, by first wife, Iseman, married 
George Savitz, Jr. ; their daughter Catherine married Noah 
Partee; their daughter Maria Emeline married Major Foard, and 
their daughter Moselle married Colonel Means. Mrs. Means first 
married John Francis Ross. To this marriage were born four 
children : John Lindsay, Frederick Powell, Robert Gallaway and 
Minnie Foard Ross. Four Foards, originally written Ford, came 
to America early in the eighteenth century. Wyatt Foard mar- 
ried Elizatbeth Pearson, aunt of Chief Justice Pearson. Their 
son Frederick married Eunice Bradshaw. Their son Robert 
Wyatt married Maria Emeline Partee, and Mrs. Moselle Means 
was their daughter. Major Foard was a successful farmer, pros- 
perous merchant, and a Christian gentleman. 

Colonel Means's maternal ancestry was this : John Brandon 
early in the eighteenth century had a son Richard, who married 
Margaret Locke, sister of General Matthew Locke. Their son 
Matthew Brandon married Jane Armstrong, who was such a 
heroine that .she saw the Tories and British burn down her home 
because she would not tell where her hu.sband was. Their daugh- 
ter, Elizabeth Brandon married General Paul Barringer, whose 
daughter Catherine Jane was the mother of Colonel Means. "The 
Brandons originally came from England, where for many cen- 
turies they played a conspicuous part in public affairs, as every 
reader of English history knows." (Rev. Dr. Jethro Rumple's 
"History of Rowan County," page 251.) 

Colonel Means' early preference was for the medical profes- 
sion, but he turned to the law at the request of his father. His 
success as a lawyer was impeded by his discursions into the field 
of politics, in which for a season his impetuous temperament en- 
grossed him utterly. While he gave his whole soul to pushing 
the aspirations of his friends for office, sometimes giving offense 
by his urgency, he does not care to make similar exertions for 
himself. 

The colonel has had his full share of vigorous health. He did 
not shirk when a boy joining in with his father's many slaves 
in farm labors, varied by fox hunting and partridge shooting, 



376 



NORTH CAROLINA 



which latter is his present favorite amusement at sixty years of 
age. This kind of Hfe has been so beneficial to him in procur- 
ing a strong and active frame, that he thinks it preferable to the 
present fashionable devotion to ball games. He still prefers to 
execute with his own hands what further north are called chores 
or home work about his own premises, such as chopping all his 
fire wood, etc. He counsels young men : "To do all the work pos- 
sible about home, beginning before breakfast, so as to be real 
beneficial factors in home life. Never to use home, as an animal, 
only as a place for eating and sleeping. And above all that they 
should 'seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.' Not 
the pseudo-righteousness of men ; for, the most contemptible 
creature on earth is a hypocrite." 

He also urges all to take a conscientious and intelligent interest 
in public affairs. Because only thus can the despicable dema- 
gogue be eliminated. He has no patience with woman suffrage. 
He thinks their noble qualities have full scope in the family and in 
society. But he has long, in trustee meetings and elsewhere, been 
an ardent advocate of opening wide the doors of our University to 
women just as to men. 

Kemp P. Battle. 





,, „„^ ^ ,-»;/',_—, 5,Br,N^ 




^^_^ ^ z-;^ — c^-^^^-A , 





JOHN FULENWIDER MILLER 




'HE Scotch-Irish element of our population has 
been one of the strongest strains of blood that 
has been introduced into our life. It has pro- 
duced men of action, men of high character, and 
men of forcefulness in all kinds of activity. It 
came to America with well-formulated ideals 
of frontier life; it transplanted to the Western forest regions a 
society which came fairly well organized, and it began from the 
moment of its arrival to develop a generation of strong men. In 
those parts of the colonies to which immigrants came from all 
parts of the world it took some time to integrate the discordant 
elements, and society was, therefore, slower in taking up the line 
of its development. 

Of all the Scotch-Irish who came to North Carolina, no man 
was superior in pluck and effectiveness to David Miller, who, 
about the year 1764, came with his wife and five children to what 
was then Tryon County. He found land to suit him near Moun- 
tain Creek and Main Broad River, in what is now Rutherford 
County. He built his pioneer home one mile from Twitty's Ford, 
on Broad River, and four miles from the present town of Ruther- 
fordton. He was appointed entry-taker, a position in which it was 
possible to discover the best land, and he soon had large pos- 
sessions. He was a Whig in the Revolution, although in his 
community there were many Tories. He was an elder in the 



378 NORTH CAROLINA 

Presbyterian Church, and long before his death, in 1803, he was 
regarded as one of the most considerable men in the county. 

David Miller's eldest son was John Miller, who married Susan 
Twitty, a step-daughter of Colonel William Graham. Of this 
pioneer woman the following story is told : Just before the battle 
at King's Mountain the Tories became so active that it was 
thought best for the Whigs to take refuge in fortified places. A 
number were collected at Colonel Graham's, when a body of about 
sixty Tories attacked the place. During the affair an adventurous 
Tory got up to a window, and was about to shoot a brother of 
Susan Twitty when she pulled his body suddenly out of range 
of the gun. Immediately she made her brother fire at the man 
who had tried to kill him, and the Tory fell dead. Then the 
brave girl, who was no more than fifteen years old, opened the 
door, in full view of the beseiging party, took the gun and shot 
pouch of the dead man and regained the house in safety. Such 
a woman could not but give marked characteristics to her off- 
spring. In one respect she gave a significant turn to her husband's 
family history. She was Methodist, and her strong character 
wrought the religious ideals of her Presbyterian husband so well 
that from that time this particular branch of the Miller family 
was Methodist, and actively Methodist. 

John Miller had six children, the youngest of whom was 
William J. T. Miller. He became a physician in Cleveland County, 
as well as a planter. He was a man of much influence, several 
times a member of the State legislature, and a member of the 
conventions of 1861 and 1868. He married Elizabeth Fulenwider 
of Lincoln County, and had ten children. Of these the eldest was 
John Fulenwider Miller, the subject of this sketch, who was born 
December 25, 1834. 

The early influences in the life of this boy were those of a 
refined and wholesome Southern home of the old regime, in 
which religion and duty were the inspiring ideals. For the physi- 
cal part of a boy's rearing there was proper work on the plantation, 
enough to develop industry and the faculty of managing aflFairs; 
and for his intellect, a wide comprehension of nature. His earliest 



JOHN FULENWIDER MILLER 379 

schooling was obtained at Shelby. From that place he went to 
Cokesbury High School in South Carolina. Next he was sent to 
the University of North Carolina, but he did not finish the course, 
having left that institution to attend the Charleston Medical Col- 
lege, and from that place to the Jefferson Medical College in 
Philadelphia. At the last-named place he received the degree of 
Doctor of Medicine in 1858. 

Back from his professional studies, the young man came to 
settle down to practice medicine with his father. For three years 
the partnership existed, and then it gave way to the war fever, 
which swept in its course many an arrangement of longer stand- 
ing than the association of Miller & Son. He enlisted in the 
Cleveland Guards as a private, and on April 24, 1861, marched 
away to the war. A month later he was made assistant surgeon, 
and assigned to duty with the Twelfth North Carolina Regiment. 
In June, 1862, he was promoted to the rank of surgeon, and 
attached to the Thirty-fourth North Carolina Regiment. In 
August, 1864, he was appointed one of a commission to inspect 
hospitals for the army of Northern Virginia. Dr. R. T. Coleman, 
afterward a professor in the Virginia Medical College, and Dr. 
George T. Harrison, who became a prominent New York 
physician after the war, were other members of the commission. 
The work of this body was accomplished in a few months, and 
in December, 1864, Dr. Miller was appointed chief surgeon of the 
department of Eastern North Carolina and Southern Virginia, 
and attached to General L. H. Baker's staff. In this capacity he 
was serving when Sherman, in 1865, turned from his northward 
march at Goldsboro, North Carolina, and moved off to the west- 
ward to intercept the supposed retreat of Lee's army. At Louis- 
burg, North Carolina, his column, under the command of General 
O. O. Howard, came upon the young surgeon-in-chief, who would 
not leavt the post to which he was assigned, but chose to sur- 
render with the wounded intrusted to him. And thus it happened 
that for the subject of this sketch the war came to an end. It 
is noteworthy that it was a complete end. As he doffed his gray 
coat and became a simple citizen again, he surrendered all the 



38o NORTH CAROLINA 

sectionalism and all the bitterness which a narrower nature might 
have nursed out of the disappointments of the time. 

During the war Dr. Miller had come to Goldsboro, North Caro- 
lina. There he met Miss Sarah L. Borden. She was the daughter 
of Arnold Borden of Fall River, Massachusetts, an enterprising 
New Englander, who had settled at old Waynesboro as a merchant, 
and who owned much of the land on which the town of Goldsboro 
was later located. She was a woman of fine Christian character, a 
superior mind, and many graces of person and temper. This happy 
and helpful marriage decided the place in which Dr. Miller's future 
residence was thrown. It resulted in the birth of eight children, 
all of whom reached maturity. They are John C. Miller, a pro- 
fessor in the school for the deaf and dumb at Morganton, North 
Carolina ; Charles B. Miller, a prosperous druggist of Goldsboro, 
North Carolina; Mrs. Loulie Michaux, of the same place; 
Hugh L. Miller, deceased ; Mrs. Mary B. Southerland, Frank M. 
Miller, assistant superintendent of the Borden Manufacturing 
Company, and Dr. Robert B. Miller, all of Goldsboro; and Mrs. 
Bessie W. Hill of Danville, Virginia. Mrs. Miller, whose faithful 
training, aided by her husband's efforts, brought all these children 
to an honorable and useful manhood or womanhood, was taken 
to the reward of the faithful on August 8, 1901. No one who 
knew her will be able to refrain from speaking of her splendid 
womanly qualities. 

In Goldsboro Dr. Miller resumed the practice of medicine. At 
once his practice became large. Till he gave it up for his present 
position, he was at the head of his profession in the town. The 
importance of Goldsboro was due, in the first place, to the fact 
that it was a railroad center. Established not many years before 
the war, it had all the advantages of new and enterprising blood ; 
and when to this was added the impetus which local trade received 
on the restoration of peace, it then took a fast pace, which has 
since been continued through the enterprise of her citizens. It 
was the first town in North Carolina to establish graded schools 
of the modern kind ; it was noted for its genial and refined society ; 
few North Carolina towns have sent out more sons who have 



JOHN FULENWIDER MILLER 381 

taken position in the country than it, and few have stood for a 
cleaner type of town spirit. In the making of all this Dr. Miller 
took a prominent part. His calm and fair spirit has ever been 
for the best kind of civic life. He has been concerned in every 
movement for town progress which came into his way. In all 
respects he has been the ideal citizen. 

On January i, 1888, he became superintendent of the State 
Hospital at Goldsboro. This is a State-supported institution for 
insane colored people. It is not a work which will attract the 
attention of many people. It is a work in which one who directs 
it might do his official duty and still do less than humanity dic- 
tated. But to Dr. Miller it was more than an official position. It 
was a responsibility to a weak and dependent people, and he has 
discharged it out of the goodness of a benevolent soul. How 
much of care and anxiety he has given to the poor, friendless ones 
under his charge the world will never know. In business man- 
agement his administration has been very successful. To this day 
he remains in charge of the hospital. Although past the middle 
period of life, he is vigorous and accurate as in the days of young 
manhood. His recent election for fourth term as superintendent, 
embracing a period of twenty-four years, evidences the continued 
confidence of the Board of Directors in the ability and faithfulness 
of his management. 

Next to the death of his wife, the greatest sorrow that has 
come into the life of this strong man was the death of his third 
son, Hugh L. Miller, in 1902. This young man united in himself 
the rarest qualities of mind and heart. Handsome in person, 
intelligent and faithful in duty, he had begun a career which prom- 
ised to make him a man of mark in whatever community he 
resided. He contracted disease as a naval volunteer in the war 
with Spain, and from the eflfects of it no medical skill could save 
him. His death was a crushing blow to his family, and to many 
a friend who had come to love him. 

Dr. Miller has been a member of the Methodist Church since 
his youth. He has ever been one of the chief stays of its strength 
in Goldsboro. He has frequently been a delegate to the annual 



382 NORTH CAROLINA 

conference, and several years ago he was made president of the 
Advocate Publishing Company, which publishes the weekly organ 
of the North Carolina Conference. 

As a physician he illustrates the best traits of his profession. A 
large and prepossessing man, with an air of firmness and self- 
command, he has ever carried hope and confidence with him into 
the sick-room. Many a sick one has drawn virtue from the light 
of his countenance. With all he has been a man of deep piety, a 
man of truth, and a trustworthy man. He was formed in the 
mold of the old-fashioned Southern gentleman, a kind of man 
which our present life seems rarely to make. He stands for a 
type of individuality the want of which must make the modern 
harum-scarum graduate of a medical school a failure, let him know 
never so much of the lore of books. He refers to himself as "the 
fortunate man who never wrote a book." But he has been the 
pioneer writer on the insanity of the negro. He presented a paper 
before the meeting of the Medico-Psychological Association at 
Asheville in 1896 on the Effects of Emancipation upon the 
Mental and Physical Health of the Negro in the South. It was 
largely noticed by a number of scientific writers, both North and 
South. In 1902 he presented a paper on the same subject before 
a meeting of the Tri-State Medical Society in Charleston, South 
Carolina. His long and conscientious study of the conditions of 
negro insanity makes him an authority on the subject. It is doubt- 
ful if there is another man in the country who has had so good 
an opportunity to observe and draw conclusions in regard to it. 

A marked characteristic of Dr. Miller's nature is his loyalty 
to his friends. No man could be truer. He himself attributes 
the best influences of the formative period of his life to his home 
life and early companionships. In his own home he has repro- 
duced all of the strong qualities which made for the development 
of his own character. He is also noted for his business ability. 
This is shown in the many kinds of business he has carried on in 
connection with his professional labors. It is also shown in his 
excellent business management of the Eastern Hospital. A recent 
legislative committee, which had investigated this institution, said 



JOHN FULENWIDER MILLER 



383 



that, considering the character of its inmates, the economic basis 
upon which the hospital was run, and the pecuHar needs of such 
an institution, they considered this one of the best managed of all 
the public institutions of the State. Dr. Miller would be the last 
person to desire to set himself up in rivalry with any other super- 
intendent of an asylum or other State institution; but the testi- 
mony of this utterance is due him to show his ability and faith- 
fulness. 

/. 5". Bassett. 





ELISHA MITCHELL 




THE name of Elisha Mitchell, the subject of this 
sketch, has appropriately been bestowed on the 
highest peak east of the Rocky Mountains, 
which will perpetuate to the end of recorded 
time the memory of this distinguished scientist, 
_ to whom North Carolina is so much indebted. 

Dr. Mitchell was sprung from early colonial parentage. In 
163 1 an ancestor of his, John Eliot, then twenty-six years of age, 
and a Puritan minister of Roxboro, England, came to Connecticut, 
and became famous as an author of valuable works. In particu- 
lar is he remembered as the "Apostle to the Indians," to whom 
he carried the Gospel. Among his publications was an Indian 
Primer and his translation of the Bible into the Indian language. 
His son. Rev. Jared Eliot, M.D. and D.D., was for many years 
a minister at Killingworth, Connecticut, and he was equally as 
distinguished as his father. He had an extensive knowledge of 
history, natural philosophy, botany and mineralogy, while being 
a sound theologian. Among his correspondents were Dr. Frank- 
lin and the celebrated Bishop Berkeley, and in 1762 he was hon- 
ored by the Royal Society of London with a gold medal for a 
valuable discovery in the manufacture of iron. He was the great- 
grandfather of Dr. Mitchell, who was born in Washington, Con- 
necticut, on the 19th of August, 1793, and who in many respects 
strongly resembled this ancestor. 



ELISHA MITCHELL 385 

With a descent from a highly intellectual parentage, Dr. 
Mitchell was remarkably precocious. When only four years of 
age he acted a spirited part in a school exhibition, to the delight 
of his fellow-pupils and of his friends. He was prepared for 
college by Rev. Azel Backus, a famous scholar of that day. Enter- 
ing Yale College, Dr. Mitchell graduated at that institution in 
1813, along with Hon. George E. Badger, Thomas P. Devereux 
and Dr. Olmsted, and others who became famous in the various 
walks of life, among whom he was accounted as one of the best 
in scholastic attainments, being particularly distinguished for his 
knowledge of English literature. His first employment was as an 
assistant in a school for boys at Jamaica, in Long Island, and in 
the spring of 1815 he took charge of a school for girls in New 
London. 

In 1816 Dr. Mitchell became a tutor in Yale College, but hardly 
had he done so before a more inviting field of labor was opened 
to him. Judge Gaston was about that time one of the dis- 
tinguished members of Congress, ranking with Webster and Clay, 
all then being comparatively young men, but of acknowledged 
superior ability ; and Rev. Sereno E. Dwight, the chaplain to the 
Senate of the United States, recommended to Judge Gaston the 
appointment of Dr. Mitchell to the chair of mathematics and of 
Dr. Olmsted to the chair of chemistry, then first established at 
the University of North Carolina, and in 18 17 these appointments 
were made. Accepting the employment, Dr. Mitchell spent a 
short time at the Theological Seminary at Andover, and received 
his license to preach the Gospel from an Orthodox Congregational 
Association in Connecticut. On the last day of January, 1818, 
he reached the University, and entered at once on his duties as 
professor of mathematics and natural philosophy, studies that had 
previously been taught by Dr. Caldwell, who was at that time 
appointed president of the University. There were then 120 stu- 
dents in the institution, and the faculty consisted of Dr. Cald- 
well, the president; and Dr. Hooper, professor of ancient lan- 
guages ; Governor Morehead and Priestly H. Mangum as tutors. 
In the senior class were Bishop Green, H. C. Jones, Rev. Dr. 



386 NORTH CAROLINA 

Morrison, President Polk, Hugh Waddell and other distinguished 
men; while in the junior class were Judge Anderson of Florida, 
Senator William H. Haywood and Hon. James T. Morehead. 
Among the sophomores were Judge William H. Battle, Hon. B. F. 
Moore and Bishop Otey; while in the freshman class were many 
who subsequently attained distinction. Soon after his arrival 
Dr. Mitchell preached his first sermon in the college chapel, and 
three years later he was ordained as a full minister by the Pres- 
bytery of Orange, and he continued to preach at Chapel Hill dur- 
ing his entire life. 

He was devoted to his profession as an instructor, and in dis- 
charge of his duties he exhibited an energy, an intelligence, a self- 
denial and an attention to minute particulars seldom equalled and 
never surpassed. He gave great satisfaction in every sphere of 
life, and at once established himself in the esteem, confidence and 
affection of those with whom he was associated. 

When teaching in New London, he had formed the acquaintance 
of Miss Maria S. North, a daughter of an eminent physician of 
that place, and an attachment having sprung up between them, 
in 1 819 he married her; and during the remainder of his 
life her loving association was the greatest blessing vouchsafed 
him. 

For seven years he continued to preside over his original depart- 
ment, but in 1825, when Dr. Olmsted accepted a position with 
Yale College, Dr. Mitchell was transferred to the vacated chair, 
and Dr. Phillips became professor of mathematics. In the mean- 
while, however, Dr. Mitchell had extended the course of mathe- 
matics so as to embrace calculus, and the other branches of 
mathematics were enlarged, requiring a higher degree of attain- 
ment. Dr. Olmsted had been employed by the State of North 
Carolina to make a geological survey of the State, and he had 
awakened no little interest in the study of natural science. This 
study had ever been particularly inviting to Dr. Mitchell, whose 
tastes led him to employ himself in such pursuits. Even while 
a professor of mathematics, he made many pedestrian excursions 
through the country studying botany, and when he began his 



ELISHA MITCHELL 387 

instruction in mineralogy and geology he multiplied these ex- 
cursions, and formed an intimate acquaintance with the botany 
and geology of the State. Always remarkable for great bodily 
activity, he conducted expeditions into every part of North Caro- 
lina, looking for flowers and mosses and trees, and for rocks and 
strata and deposits, so that he became thoroughly conversant with 
the physical geography of the entire State. While the informa- 
tion he gathered was arranged chiefly for the instruction of his 
pupils, yet he furnished many articles for publication ; among them 
the earliest being one on the Low Country of North Carolina, in 
1828; on the Geology of the Gold Regions of North Carolina, in 
1829; on the Causes of Winds and Storms, in 1831 ; and Notices 
of High Mountains in North Carolina, in 1839. He continued 
the publication of similar articles throughout his life. 

To facilitate his labors in the class-room, he prepared for his 
own classes a "Manual of Chemistry," a "Manual of Geology," 
illustrated by a geological map of North Carolina ; a "Manual of 
Natural History," and a "Collection of Facts and Dates" respect- 
ing the history, geography, etc., of the Holy Land, a minute 
acquaintance with which he was always very desirous of pro- 
moting among his students. 

In June, 1830, he accompanied Governor Owen and the other 
members of the Board of Internal Improvements and Governor 
Swain on a trip from Haywood down the Cape Fear to Fayette- 
ville, and availed himself of the opportunity of obtaining more 
particular knowledge of the geology of that interesting part of 
the country. When those distinguished naturalists, the Michaux, 
were in Western North Carolina, toward the close of the previous 
century, they had believed that the peaks of Black Mountain were 
the highest east of the Rocky Mountains, that conclusion being 
reached because the plants found there are not met with again 
until Canada is reached. Vice-President Calhoun had suggested 
in 1825 to Governor Swain the same view, based on the water- 
courses, and Dr. Mitchell also entertained the same opinion. 

In the summer of 1835 Dr. Mitchell made his first attempt to 
verify by barometrical measurement the accuracy of these views. 



388 NORTH CAROLINA 

His exploration was laborious, careful and patient. To climb 
the Black Mountain and carry up the instruments to determine its 
height in 1835 required courage and scientific ardor to an unusual 
degree. The country, naturally savage, was at that time very 
little known. It was much more inaccessible than it has since 
become by reason of the progress of settlements around its base; 
but Dr. Mitchell overcame all difSculties, and he found the height 
of one of the peaks to be 6476 feet, while Mount Washington in 
New Hampshire, long considered the highest point of the Alle- 
ghanies, is only 6428 feet high. Dr. Mitchell's account of this 
exploration was published, and attracted wide attention. It was 
the first authoritative announcement that Black Mountain was 
higher than the White Mountains, and, indeed, the highest in the 
United States east of the Rockies. 

Dr. Mitchell visited the mountain again in 1844, and after sur- 
veying its line of peaks, he selected what seemed the highest 
peak, and obtaining the assistance of some mountaineers, he 
attempted to climb it. He succeeded in getting on the mountain, 
and, as he thought, on the peak he had selected. In recognition 
of his discovery, his name was attached to a peak of the mountain 
on the maps and geographies of that period; but about 1855 Gen- 
eral Clingman claimed that Dr. Mitchell had never been on and 
had never measured the very highest peak ; while he himself in 
that year had done so, and it was proposed to confer the name of 
Clingman on the highest peak. Dr. Mitchell, on the other hand, 
contended that he was the first to measure and ascertain its 
superior height, and that he was on that very peak and had 
measured it in 1844. Several letters passed on the subject through 
the newspapers, and Dr. Mitchell announced his purpose of visit- 
ing the mountains again and remeasuring the peak and taking the 
statements of those who had acted as his guides on his former 
visit. About the middle of June, 1857, he therefore went to the 
mountains, accompanied by his son, Charles A. Mitchell, one of his 
daughters and a servant boy, and establishing headquarters at 
Jesse Stepps's, at the foot of the mountain, began the laborious 
task of ascertaining the height of the highest peak by an instru- 



ELISHA MITCHELL 389 

mental survey. He had proceeded with his work near two weeks, 
and had reached a quarter of a mile above William Patton's 
mountain-house about 2.30 o'clock in the afternoon of Saturday', 
the 27th of June, when he quit work, proposing to cross the 
mountain to the settlement on Caney River for the purpose of 
seeing Mr. Wilson and others who had guided him to the top on 
a former visit. He promised to return on Monday at noon. This 
was the last time he was ever seen alive. 

Not having returned by Wednesday, Mr. Stepp started on 
Thursday morning to Caney River in search of him. On arriving 
at Mr. Wilson's, he learned that Dr. Mitchell had not reached that 
settlement. The alarm was at once given, and before sundown on 
Friday evening companies of hardy mountaineers were on their 
way up the mountain. As the alarm spread, many citizens of 
Asheville and other parts of the country flocked to the mountains 
to assist in the search for one so universally beloved and respected. 
On the night of the following Tuesday his remains were found. 
Mr. Wilson surmised that Dr. Mitchell had attempted to follow 
the same route that he had taken in 1844, but had strayed from it. 
They traced him down the precipices of the mountain until they 
reached a stream, found his traces going down it a hundred yards 
or so, when they came to a rushing cataract some forty feet high. 
Here they saw his footprints trying to climb around the edge of 
the yawning precipice, and then the moss torn up as he had 
grasped in vain. Descending hastily to the bottom of the roaring 
abyss, they found a basin fourteen feet deep filled with clear and 
crystal waters, and at the bottom, quietly reposing with out- 
stretched arms, lay the mortal remains of Dr. Mitchell, the great, 
the good, the wise, the simple-minded, the pure of heart, in- 
structor of youth, disciple of knowledge and the preacher of 
Christianity. The highest peak of the Black Mountains is in 
Yancey County, and about fifty citizens of that county soon 
assembled at the spot, and having enveloped the body in a sheet 
securely fastened upon a long pole borne on the shoulders of ten 
men, brought the remains up the mountain. The body was carried 
to Asheville and there interred. Memorial meetings of citizens 



390 • NORTH CAROLINA 

were held throughout the State amid many manifestations of pub- 
lic grief. 

It having been determined that Dr. Mitchell's remains should 
finally rest on the highest peak of the Black Mountains, on the 
14th of June, 1858, they were exhumed, and, attended by a large 
concourse of citizens, by the venerable bishop of the diocese of 
Tennessee, the president of the University and members of his 
family, the body was borne to the summit of the mountain, and 
Bishop Otey read the impressive burial service of the Episcopal 
Church; and since that time a substantial monument has been 
erected over the spot; the altitude by more recent measurements 
being determined to be 6717 feet high. 

The untimely end of Dr. Mitchell was greatly deplored, and 
excited the profoundest sympathy and interest throughout the 
State. As a man, he was greatly esteemed, filling many functions 
most acceptably. He was the college bursar; he was the justice 
of the peace, a farmer, a commissioner for the village of Chapel 
Hill, and at times its magistrate of police; and he was a regular 
preacher in the college chapel and in the village church. In the 
pulpit he often gave evidence of the vast extent of his learning, 
while his blameless life, his humble faith, drew him near to the 
hearts of all. As a teacher. Dr. Mitchell took great pains in incul- 
cating the first principles of science and unfolding those natural 
truths of which he was so fond. His acquirements extended into 
every field of learning, and so accurate and vast was his informa- 
tion that he was often referred to as the "College Encyclopaedia." 
Under his training, such interest was awakened in natural science 
among the students that in this respect a great benefit was con- 
ferred on the State. As a discipHnarian, he was vigilant, consci- 
entious, long-suffering, firm and mild. When offenses were com- 
mitted, to the offender he set forth his conduct in its true light; 
but when punishment was to be inflicted, he generally proposed 
some measure which appealed to the culprit's better feelings. 

In his home he was venerated as well as beloved. Besides his 
work in the college, and other duties of a public nature, he edu- 
cated his own children, and especially were his daughters educated 



ELISHA MITCHELL 391 

to a degree not often attempted. Indeed, somewhat in line with 
his own precocity, it is recalled that one of his daughters was 
studying Greek before she was four years of age. He left five 
children, four daughters and one son, Dr. Charles A. Mitchell, 
who became a surgeon in the Confederate army, and, surviving the 
war, died in 1868. 

General Vance has sweetly sung of Dr. Mitchell's fate and 
resting place : 

"On the highest peak of a mighty chain 

Of hill and mountain fastness, 
Where Nature doth her primal rule maintain 

Amid their solemn vastness, 
There's a lonely grave that the mountains gave, 
Which the sorrowing moonbeams gently lave. 



The tremulous trills of the mother bird, 
As she sings her songs so lowly, 

Though a sweeter tone the ear never heard. 
Touch not a rest so holy; 

For God keeps him there in the upper air, 

Sleeping and waiting for the morning fair. 



But a morn shall come, O glorious morn ! 

When the trumpet's shrill sounding 
Shall reach every soul that ever was born, 

And life anew be bounding; 
And God in His might, from the mountain height. 
Shall wake His servant to the wondrous sight." 

5". A. Ashe. 




DAVID REID MURCHISON 




iHERE is a region of country in North Carolina, 
extending from the headwaters of the Cape 
Fear River in Cumberland and Harnett counties 
to the inlet through which that stream pours 
its waters into the ocean, known as the Cape 
Fear section. It is the land of the grape, of the 
honeysuckle and the jasmine. No one who has ever made the trip 
in the springtime from Fayetteville to Wilmington on one of the 
steamers which in the olden time plied between those places on the 
Cape Fear River will soon forget it. The banks, festooned with 
wild and luxuriant vines, white with the bloom of the dogwood 
and bay flower, the air fragrant with perfume, enchanted the 
senses and captured the heart. It is a land of industry and free- 
dom, of ardent zeal, dauntless energy and great aspiration. Its 
people lived in a style of elegance and profusion not inferior to 
the barons of England, and dispensed a generous and delightful 
hospitality, which is never forgotten by those who have enjoyed 
it. They have ever been animated by the glories of a chivalrous 
descent. Their ideas are elevated, and there is a majestic char- 
acter to their thoughts. They have been distinguished by their 
uniform and enthusiastic love of liberty, and their character has 
been illustrated in every age by their heroic exploits. In no part 
of the world will a stranger meet with a more courteous reception, 
with a more generous hospitality, or can he trust with more per- 




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DAVID REID MURCHISON 393 

feet security the honesty and fidelity of the inhabitants. He ever 
leaves this people with regret, and wonders that they have not 
become accustomed to the frauds of trade or the vices of luxury. 
His remembrance of them is as a sweet aroma, which he will carry 
with him in the years to come. 

Amid such a people the subject of this sketch was born and 
reared. The life of David Reid Murchison illustrated two truths 
which have long been recognized — the power of heredity and the 
influence of environment on character. In his life were repro- 
duced the virtues of an ancestry renowned in the early history of 
our country, and he exhibited to an eminent degree those traits 
of character which have made the people of the Cape Fear region 
of North Carolina loved by all whose good fortune it has been 
to have known them. 

His grandfather, Kenneth McKenzie Murchison, and Dr. 
Thomas Reid were among his earliest known ancestors in America. 
They both emigrated from Scotland and settled in this country, 
the former in 1773 and the latter in the early part of the eighteenth 
century. John Ramsay, his maternal great father, with his 
brother, Ambrose Ramsay, were active and uncompromising 
patriots in the Revolutionary War for our independence. Am- 
brose Ramsay was a member of the Provincial Congress which 
met at Halifax, North Carolina, the 4th of April, 1776, and was 
also a delegate to the Provincial Congress which was appointed 
to assemble at the same place on the 12th of November, 1776, 
which was "not only to make laws, but also to form a constitution, 
which was to be the cornerstone of all law, and, as it was well or 
ill ordered, would tend to the happiness or misery of the State." 

David Reid Murchison was born at "Holly Hill," Manchester, 
in the county of Cumberland, on the 5th day of December, 1837. 
His father, Duncan Murchison, was born at Manchester, Cumber- 
land County, the 20th of May, 1801. He was a merchant and 
manufacturer of cotton goods, and dealt largely in naval stores. 
His integrity and capacity for commercial affairs gave him a 
widely extended influence. His mother, Fannie Reid, was an 
accomplished lady, greatly beloved in the community in which she 



394 NORTH CAROLINA 

lived. The family of Duncan Murchison were devotedly attached 
to the cause of the South during the Civil War. John R. Murchi- 
son, the eldest son, was universally loved by all his associates. 
He achieved high reputation as a soldier. He was killed at Cold 
Harbor on the ist of June, 1864, whilst in command of the Eighth 
North Carolina Regiment, of which he was colonel. Kenneth M. 
Murchison, the second son, was also conspicuous for his services. 
For good conduct on many fields he was promoted in May, 1863, 
to be colonel of the Fifty-fourth North Carolina Regiment, which 
he commanded until taken prisoner the 7th of November, 1863. 
He was so held until July, 1865. 

David Reid Murchison spent his early days in the upper part 
of Cumberland County, on Little River, in a Scotch settlement, 
whose people were honest, thrifty, prosperous and brave. Here 
he received the rudiments of his education, which was finished at 
the University of Virginia. Although as a youth he was not 
strong physically, he was fond of athletic sports. He had a passion 
for fishing and hunting, and when his business interests and duties 
would permit, he would often carry a number of friends as his 
guests and spend days upon the splendid preserves owned or 
controlled by him. 

In i860 he commenced his business career as a member of the 
firm of Eli Murray & Company of Wilmington, North Carolina, 
which was interrupted in 1861 by the commencement of the Civil 
War. He enlisted at once in the Seventh North Carolina Regiment, 
and remained with that command one year, when he was trans- 
ferred to the Fifty-fourth North Carolina Regiment and assigned 
to duty with the rank of captain. With this regiment he saw 
active service, and his conduct always reflected honor and credit 
upon him as a brave and efficient officer. He was taken from 
the Fifty-fourth North Carolina Regiment and made inspector- 
general of the Commissary Department of North Carolina, having 
been appointed to this position by President Davis on account of 
his executive ability, which was at his then early age recognized as 
of a very high order. The change from active service to his new 
duties was very distasteful to him and against his wishes. Brave 



DAVID REID MURCHISON 395 

himself, and born of heroic blood, with a firmness and fortitude 
which faltered in no crisis, he had an aptitude for war, and doubt- 
less would have risen high in the profession of arms had he been 
allowed to have seen active service in the field to the close of the 
war, as was his wish and desire. One of his chief characteristics, 
however, was a high sense of duty, which always prompted him 
to do whatever work was before him as best he knew how. He 
filled the position to which he was assigned until the close of the 
war with great credit to himself and benefit to the soldiers of 
North Carolina. 

In 1866 he resumed his business life, which had been interrupted 
by the Civil War, and became a member of the mercantile firm 
of which the New York branch was known as Murchison & 
Company, the Wilmington branch as Williams & Murchison and 
the Fayetteville branch as John D. Williams & Company. It was 
composed of John D. Williams, George W. Williams, Kenneth M. 
Murchison and D. R. Murchison. This firm established an im- 
mense business. It had unlimited credit at home and abroad with 
uninterrupted success, to which the energy, enterprise and sagacity 
of D. R. Murchison largely contributed. Such was the judgment 
of his co-partners and the commercial world. In 1880 he was 
appointed receiver of the Carolina Central Railroad Company. 
He so managed its affairs as to win the approval of all who were 
financially or otherwise interested in its success. He soon there- 
after purchased a controlling interest in the road, and continued 
to conduct its affairs with high success until, warned by his failing 
health that the days of his active energies would soon be brought 
to a close, he sold his interest in the road to John M. Robinson 
of Baltimore. He was one of the founders of the Bank of New 
Hanover, and from its organization one of its most useful direct- 
ors. During his life that bank had wonderful success, and stood 
in the front rank of the great financial institutions of the South. 
He was connected with many of the most important business 
enterprises in Eastern North Carolina, and in the management of 
all he was an influential factor. 

He was married on January 11, 1872, to Miss Lucy Wooster 



396 NORTH CAROLINA 

Wright, a beautiful woman, who to a gentle and refined nature 
united a charm of manner and tenderness of heart which made 
her an attractive personality in every circle in which she moved. 
Their home was the abode of a generous and elegant hospitality, 
which both husband and wife cherished not only as a pleasure, 
but a virtue. She was the daughter of Joshua Grainger Wright 
of Wilmington, a lawyer of high attainments and distinguished 
as an orator and scholar. She was the granddaughter of Judge 
Joshua Grainger Wright, whose family gave its name to Wrights- 
ville Sound, so well known to all people in North Carolina who 
seek the pleasures of social life in its most attractive garb. Her 
mother was Mary Ann Walker, a lady whose life and Christian 
virtues elevated and adorned society. She was the daughter of 
Julius Henry Walker and Mary Wright McNeill. There was born 
of the marriage of David R. Murchison and Lucy Wooster Wright 
one child — Lucile Wright Murchison — who was the joy and de- 
light of both father and mother. 

Captain Murchison's character and nature would have won the 
respect and love of any community. His qualities endeared him 
to the brave and chivalrous people amongst whom he lived, and 
from his boyhood until his death.he had their confidence and warm 
regard. In his daily intercourse with men he was reserved of 
manner, with a dignity and courtesy which always commanded 
respect. He was a pure man in thought and act. Not one of his 
most intimate associates ever heard fall from his lips an expression 
which was coarse or low. Like most pure men and women, he 
loved the beauties of nature. As a boy he would wander for 
hours amidst the dense forests of pine in upper Cumberland and 
listen with delight to the soft and strange melody which came 
from their boughs as they were stirred by the breeze. It was a 
music which ever Hngered in his memory. In later years, after 
he had, with his brother, Colonel K. M. Murchison, purchased 
the splendid game preserve in Yancey County, which lies at the 
foot of Black Mountain, and extends for many miles on both 
banks of Cane River, which sings and ripples and dashes through 
it, he was supremely happy as he looked down from the wild and 



DAVID REID MURCHISON 397 

rugged heights of the mountain, which he often cHmbed, upon 
the enchanting scenery which greeted his vision. It was here, 
and amid such scenes, and by his fireside at home, that his friends 
and companions reahzed and knew that the man of iron will 
had a pathos and tenderness of feeling and a poetry of thought 
unknown to the world at large. 

He was a singularly brave man, devoid of fear. Cool and self- 
reliant under all circumstances, he gave confidence and strength 
to the weak and timid. He was a generous man, full of sympathy 
and kindness for the poor and needy, to whom he gave with an 
open and liberal hand. He was a sincere man. He had an abhor- 
rence of deception and hypocrisy, and looked with scorn upon all 
that was base and mean. 

He died in the city of New York, where he had gone for 
medical treatment, on the 22d of February, 1882. He was in the 
full meridian of his intellectual power, and his nobility of mind 
and heart was never more clearly manifested than in his last days. 
He went to his rest, his fortitude unshaken by severe and long- 
continued suffering, his chief desire to give the least possible 
pain and trouble to others ; solicitous not for himself, but for the 
happiness of those he loved. His gentleness and self-abnegation 
were as beautiful as his iron nerve was firm and unyielding. 
North Carolina has furnished to the world a race of men who 
by their great qualities have shed luster upon the State which gave 
them birth. In the elements of character which constitute true 
greatness, courage, honor, truth, fidelity, unselfish love of country 
and humanity, Captain David Reid Murchison will rank with the 
best and most noble of her citizens. 

Charles M. Stedman. 





KENNETH McKENZIE MURCHISON 

3ENNETH McKENZIE MURCHISON was 
born near Fayetteville, North Carolina, Febru- 
ary 1 8, 1831 ; the son of Duncan Murchison, 
who was born in Manchester, Cumberland 
County, North Carolina, May 20, 1801, and the 
grandson of Kenneth McKenzie Murchison, 
for whom he was named, who came to this country from Scotland 
in 1773. Duncan Murchison became prominent in the planting 
and manufacture of cotton. The eldest son, John R., enlisted 
early in the war in the Eighth Regiment, won promotion to 
colonel, and was killed in the battle of Cold Harbor, June i, 1864. 
A younger son, David Reid, served in the Seventeenth and Fifty- 
fourth Regiment, and was later inspector-general of the Com- 
missary Department of the State. 

Colonel Murchison, the second son of Duncan, was graduated 
at Chapel Hill in 1853, after which he engaged in business pur- 
suits in New York City and Wilmington until the spring of 1861, 
when he disposed of his business in the North, assisted in the 
organization of a company at Fayetteville, and entered the service 
as second lieutenant. He commanded Company C of the Eighth 
Regiment, which was captured at Roanoke Island, a disaster 
which Lieutenant Murchison escaped by his fortunate absence on 
military detail. He then organized another company in Cumber- 
land County, which was assigned to the Fifty-fourth Regiment, 




iO^S Z,. /-S/1 A/hp/r^n J=>i.i,ra''i^ 



/Z C^4//i^^s <5 Byi. 




KENNETH McKENZIE MURCHISON 399 

with himself as captain. Upon the organization of the regiment 
he was elected major, was soon promoted to lieutenant-colonel, 
and after the death of Colonel J. C. S. McDowell, at Fredericks- 
burg, became the colonel of the regiment. He was especially com- 
mended for gallant service at Fredericksburg by General E. M. 
Law, commander of his brigade. He commanded his regiment at 
Chancellorsville and in the battle of Winchester against Milroy. 
Subsequently he was ordered to convey the prisoners taken on 
that occasion to Richmond, after which he returned to Winchester 
and served in guarding the wagon trains of Lee's army. On 
July 6th, in command of his regiment, he gallantly repulsed the 
enemy's advance on Williamsport. He served in Hoke's Brigade 
during subsequent operations in Virginia, and when the brigade 
was cut oiif by the enemy at Rappahannock Station, November 7, 
1863, he was among those captured. He was held a prisoner of war 
at Johnson's Island, Lake Erie, from that time until July, 1865, an 
imprisonment of twenty months. Upon his release he resumed 
business in New York, and formed a brief partnership under the 
firm name of Murray & Murchison, but dissolved it in June, 1866, 
and established the firm of Murchison & Company, the members 
of the firm being himself, his brother, David R. Murchison, 
George W. Williams of Wilmington and John D. Williams of 
Fayetteville. This firm did a very large and profitable business 
for some years, the New York house having been managed by 
Colonel Murchison, under the name of Murchison & Company; 
the Wilmington house was known as Williams & Murchison, and 
the Fayetteville connection was known as John D. Williams & 
Company. His brother, David R. Murchison, of the Wilmington 
house, who had served throughout the war, was a man of extra- 
ordinary business sagacity, which was made manifest about the 
year 1880, when, after being appointed receiver of the Carolina 
Central Railway, he startled the community by buying out the 
whole road, and conducted it successfully until his health began 
to fail, when he sold it at a profit, and not long afterward 
died. 

Colonel Murchison lived in New York after the war, but gen- 



400 NORTH CAROLINA 

erally spent the winter in North Carolina. In the year 1880 he 
bought the old historic plantation called "Orton," the family seat 
of King Roger Moore, situated about sixteen miles below Wil- 
mington, on the west side of the Cape Fear River, and the 
southernmost of all the old rice plantations on that river, and he 
expended a large amount of money in restoring it to its former 
condition, and improving it in various ways to gratify his tastes. 
Within its boundary was the colonial parish church and church- 
yard of St. Phillips's, and this interesting ruin with its conse- 
crated ground was conveyed in fee simple by Colonel Murchison 
and his brother. Captain David R. Murchison, to the Diocese of 
North Carolina. It is now carefully preserved by the North 
Carolina Society of Colonial Dames of America. "Orton" has 
always been a paradise for sportsmen, and the colonel was very 
fond of hunting. It was his custom to bring some of his friends 
down from the North every winter ; and give them the oppor- 
tunity to enjoy the old-time hospitality, which he dispensed with 
a lavish hand. It was here that those who loved him best and who 
were loved of him spent their happiest days in the full manhood 
and evening of his successful life. The restful seclusion of this 
grandest of all colonial homes, with its broad acres and primeval 
forests, was most grateful to him and to his intimate associates 
after the storm and stress of war and the subsequent struggle of 
business life. It was here that the austerity of worldly contact 
was relaxed and the manifold humanities of a gentle, kindly life 
unfolded. He never spoke of his own exploits, nor did he willingly 
recall the horrors of the four years' war. He loved to roam the 
woods with his faithful dogs, to linger for hours in the secluded 
sanctuary of the game he sought so eagerly, and the sight of his 
triumphant return from an exciting chase, with Reynard at the 
saddle-how, surrounded by his yelping pack of English hounds, 
would rouse the dullest of his guests to exclamations of 
delight. 

Colonel Murchison was also the joint owner with his brother 
David of the celebrated Caney River hunting preserves, in the 
wildest parts of the mountains of North Carolina, where they 



KENNETH McKENZIE MURCHISON 401 

spent the summers of several happy years upon the fourteen miles 
of trout streams of icy waters. Within this splendid domain is 
some of the most picturesque of American mountain scenery, in- 
cluding Mount Mitchell and the neighboring peaks. It is the 
scene of big Tom Wilson's hunting and trapping exploits, who 
still survives as the custodian of the magnificent forest and stream, 
to tell the curious stranger in his own peculiar way how he found 
the body of the great naturalist whose name Mount Mitchell 
bears. 

Colonel Murchison's striking personality was likened by those 
who knew him to that of the great German chancellor, Prince 
Bismarck, in his younger years. His commanding figure and 
uncompromising expression, which charactertized his outward 
life, suggested a military training beyond that of his war experi- 
ence, and this was in strange contrast to his inner life, a knowledge 
of which disclosed a sympathetic tenderness for all suffering or 
afflicted humanity. He preferred and practised the simple life; 
his wants were few and easily supplied. A notable characteristic 
was his exceeding devotion to his five surviving children ; he was 
proud of them and of their loyal love to him, and he made them his 
constant companions. He gave to worthy charities with a liberal 
and unostentatious hand. His patriotic spirit responded quickly 
to every public emergency, and his local pride was manifested in 
the building and equipment, at a great expense, of "The Orton" 
when a good hotel was needed in Wilmington, and when no one 
else would venture the investment. 

During the last fifteen years of his honored life. Colonel Murchi- 
son gradually withdrew from the activities of strenuous business 
cares, and with the first frosts of autumn resumed control at 
"Orton Plantation." He left it in June of 1904 in the vigor and 
spirits of abounding health, to meet a few days later the sudden 
call of theMessenger of Death, whom he had never feared. So lived 
and died a man of whom it may be said, "We ne'er shall see his 
like again." He was an example of splendid physical manhood, 
of broad experience, of unyielding integrity, pure in heart and in 
speech, with the native modesty of a woman and the courage of 



402 



NORTH CAROLINA 



a lion. He was especially sympathetic and generous to his negro 
servitors, who regarded him with loving veneration. 

Another one of the long line of proprietors from the days of 
King Roger Moore has crossed "over the river to rest under 
the shade of the trees," and the soft South breezes which brought 
from their island home the first Barbadian settlers, bring to the 
listening ear the murmured miserere of the sea. 

Alfred Moore Waddell. 






ABNER NASH 

[BNER NASH, third son of John and Ann 
Owen Nash, was born at Templeton Manor, the 
residence of his father, in Prince Edward 
County, Virginia, about 1740. 

His father, John Nash, married Ann Owen, 
daughter of Sir Hugh Owen of Tenby, Pem- 
brokeshire, Wales, and soon after, about 1730, emigrated to Vir- 
ginia, purchased a large estate in the fork of Bush and Appo- 
mattox rivers, and settled there, calling his new home Templeton 
Manor. He soon became prominent in the colonial history of that 
province; was justice of the peace, high sheriff, member of the 
Plouse of Burgesses, lieutenant governor of the county, captain 
in the Indian War, etc. He was also one of the earliest of the 
Revolutionary patriots, was chairman of the County Committee 
of Safety and member of the convention of 1775. He was one 
of the founders of Hampden-Sydney College, and was made per- 
manent chairman of the Board of Trustees. He died early 
in 1776. 

Abner Nash, who was a brother of General Francis Nash, first 
made his appearance in North Carolina at Hillsboro in 1763. He 
seemed to be prospecting, however, and did not remain there long, 
for he represented Halifax County in the Colonial Assembly dur- 
ing 1764 and 1765 and again in 1770 and 1771. He was a delegate 
from New-Bern in the four Revolutionary Congresses, and, except 



404 NORTH CAROLINA 

in the Hillsboro Convention of 1775, took a prominent part in all 
the great measures pending before them. He was a member of the 
first Council of Safety; speaker of the first House of Commons 
under the Constitution; was elected a delegate to the Continental 
Congress in 1778, but declined ; was speaker of the Senate in 1779 ; 
was elected governor of the State b)' a large majority in April, 
1780, and was continued governor of the State by an act of legis- 
lature until June 25, 1781. Then he declined to stand for re- 
election. In May, 1782, he was again elected a delegate to the 
Continental Congress, and by subsequent elections was continued 
a delegate until his death, December 5, 1786. 

This is the record in epitome of a long, consistent and efficient 
public service. His term of office as governor extended through 
the darkest period of the State's Revolutionary history, and his 
own usefulness was seriously impaired by the creation of the 
Board of War and its interference with his constitutional pre- 
rogatives. Besides, his health had at that period begun to decline. 
Notwithstanding these hindrances, however, his record as found 
in the public archives of the State entitles him to rank as a patriot 
with Caswell, Harnett and Burke. He was noted for his urbane 
manners, ready hospitality and public spirit ; and he was a man of 
undoubted ability and real power as a lawyer and orator. 

He was twice married : first to Justina Dobbs, nee Davis ; 
secondly to Mary Jones. He has now many descendants, to be 
found in nearly every State from Maine to Texas. Many of them 
have been or are still distinguished in their sections. 

He died in New York while in attendance upon the Continental 
Congress, and was accorded a public funeral at St. Paul's Church. 
Congress attended as a body, accompanied by all the public digni- 
taries, and the remains were interred in the yard of that church 
temporarily, but were afterward brought home and placed in the 
vault prepared for them at Pembroke, his country seat on the 
Trent River, near New-Bern. Thus, like most of the public men 
of that period in North Carolina, he died in the prime of life. 

Frank Nash. 




FREDERICK NASH 




[HE subject of this sketch may not have been so 
thorough a lawyer as Ruffin, so correct a 
reasoner as Pearson or so great a man as 
Gaston, yet he had quaUties of mind and heart 
which well fitted him for the eminent judicial 
position that he attained. 
Frederick Nash, second son and third child of Abner and Mary 
Jones Nash, was born in Tryon's Palace, at New-Bern, during his 
father's incumbency of the gubernatorial office, February 19, 1781. 
The Nash family had been a substantial English family for 
many years. Abner Nash himself was a lawyer of some culture 
and very decided ability ; had been in public life in the province 
and State of North Carolina from his first coming in 1763, hold- 
ing, indeed, the highest offices in the gift of the State. Mary Jones 
was the great-granddaughter of Frederick Jones, a large land- 
owner, and one of the early chief justices of the colony, and 
through a line of Puritan preachers and public men in Massa- 
chusetts and Connecticut, a direct descendant of Governor Will- 
iam Bradford of the Plymouth colony. 

At the end of Governor Nash's term of office, in June, 1781, the 
family returned to their country seat, Pembroke, on the Trent 
River, near New-Bern. 

Governor Nash died in New York, December 5, 1786, while 
in attendance on the Continental Congress. The young boy, left 



4o6 NORTH CAROLINA 

thus early without a father's care, owed much of his future success 
to the guidance and control of a wise but tender mother. From 
his youth, the older children having died, the younger members 
of the family were taught to look upon him as the head of their 
family. This early sense of responsibility, while it made him 
more manly, more sensitive to the demands of duty, tended as 
it steadied him to give a serious cast to his thoughts and amuse- 
ments. As a result, though he had little humor in his compo- 
sition, he had no bad habits, and he was a model son and a model 
brother. His mother, lying upon her deathbed in October, 1799, 
placed her hand upon his head as he knelt by her bedside and 
said to Dr. McClure, the attending physician, "Doctor, here is a 
son who has never given me one moment's pain." His devotion 
to his sisters was tempered by a most beautiful courtesy, while 
with their love for him was mingled admiration and respect. In 
later years the education of their sons, in some instances their 
grandsons, was not deemed complete until they had spent some 
time with "Uncle Nash." Three of these, who studied law in his 
office, became judges of the Supreme Court of a Southern State, 
one of them its chief justice; while others occupied positions 
almost, if not quite, as prominent. 

Another incident in his boyhood was only less sacred to him 
than that narrated above. When President Washington was in 
New-Bern in 1791, his mother presented the boy to him. The 
venerated Father of his Country lifted him to his knee, placed his 
hand upon his head and spoke words of kindness and encourage- 
ment to him. He reminded him of his gallant uncle, General 
Francis Nash, and urged him to emulate the courage and patriot- 
ism of that uncle. It was a consecration of the boy by the high 
priest of patriotism to the service of God and his country — and 
such he always regarded it. 

His education was obtained at the school of the Rev. Henry 
Patillo at Williamsboro, in Granville County; the academy of 
Rev. Thomas P. Irving in New-Bern and at Princeton College. 
He graduated with the second distinction at the latter institution 
in 1799. 



FREDERICK NASH 407 

Returning home, he studied law in the office of Edward Harris, 
afterward a Superior Court judge, and his brother-in-law. He 
was admitted to the bar in 1801, and commenced the practice of 
the law in New-Bern in competition with Francis X. Martin, John 
Stanly, William Gaston and others but little less distinguished. 

September i, 1803, he married Miss Mary G. Kollock of Eliza- 
bethtown. New Jersey, and for over fifty-five years found in her 
a complete realization of his ideals of a helpmeet. 

In 1807, on account of the health of their family, the oldest 
child having died, and in response to the urging of his kinsman. 
Judge Duncan Cameron, they removed to Hillsboro, and con- 
tinued to reside there until their deaths. 

Mr. Nash represented New-Bern in the House of Commons 
in 1804 and 1805, the county of Orange in 1814, 1815, 1816 and 
1817, and the town of Hillsboro in 1828 and 1829. During the 
period of his service, the best and ablest men in the State thought 
it an honor to be a member of the House. Even among such 
associates, Mr. Nash's career as a legislator was distinguished. 
Three of the speeches made by him in the House are preserved — 
one against duelling, in 1815; one in favor of a penitentiary for 
the State, in 1817, and republished in 1820; and the last in oppo- 
sition to the Potter movement against the banks, in 1829. In all 
of these one may mark the apt words, the terse but lucid state- 
ment, the convincing logic and earnest appeal so characteristic 
of the speaker. Chief Justice Taylor thought the speech against 
duelling worthy of a place in the second volume of his Law Re- 
pository. The speech for a penitentiary, though short — not more 
than 1200 words — is a model of clear statement and convincing 
reasoning. That in the bank discussion is much more elaborate, 
and, though following long and very able speeches by judges 
Gaston and Swain, is said to have been very efifective. 

His long judicial career — "a kind of intermediate state between 
the bustle of temporal and the calm of eternal existence," as Judge 
Gaston happily called it — caused the public to some extent to 
forget the ease and grace of his manner, the melody of his voice, 
the aptness and beauty of his phrases and the elevated sentiments 



4o8 NORTH CAROLINA 

in his public speeches, and to-day he is remembered only as a 
judge, though as an orator he is entitled to high rank. 

He was speaker of the House of Commons in 1814. "In that 
difficult post," says Mr. K. P. Battle, 103 North Carolina Re- 
ports, 501, "he distinguished himself for his readiness, courtesy 
and strictest impartiality. In all respects he was a wise and well- 
balanced man." 

As a lawyer, Mr. Nash attained a high position, enjoying a 
lucrative practice that extended from Burke County at the west 
to Granville on the east, and in the Supreme Court at Raleigh. 
Mr. John H. Bryan, father of Judge Henry R. Bryan, said : "He 
was distinguished for his upright and honorable conduct. While 
serving his clients with fidelity, he disdained to use any unworthy 
artifice or trick to insure success, and abhorred all chicanery and 
ambidextrous dealing. To the younger brethren of the profession 
he was kind and considerate, and while by his example he fur- 
nished a model for their guidance, by his advice and encourage- 
ment he cheered them on their sometimes dreary way." 

Hon. A. W. Venable describes him as "the elegant, polished and 
accomplished Christian gentleman, the sound lawyer, the just and 
upright man, whose merits as an advocate were equalled by few 
and surpassed by none." 

Without his knowledge he was elected a Superior Court judge 
in 1818. He accepted the office, and performed the duties thereof 
for eight years. In 1826 he resigned to resume the practice of 
law. In 1836 he was again elected, however, and the salary of a 
Superior Court judge having in the meantime been increased to 
$1950, he accepted, and continued to act in that capacity until he 
was transferred to the Supreme Court in 1844. 

It is said that he was "patient in hearing, even of temper and 
kind of heart." These qualities in him, united with moral courage, 
the urbane manners of a gentleman and competent learning, 
formed a character of rare judicial excellence. 

After Judge Gaston's death in 1844, Governor Morehead nom- 
inated Judge George E. Badger to fill the vacancy on the Supreme 
Court bench, but perhaps because it was thought that the Demo- 



FREDERICK NASH 409 

crats in the legislature would not elect Judge Badger, the Council 
rejected the nomination. He then presented the name of Judge 
Nash, and he was unanimously confirmed. In the December fol- 
lowing, the governor's appointment being merely ad interim, the 
legislature elected him as Judge Gaston's successor. The vote 
in the Senate was unanimous. In the House there were nineteen 
scattering votes. 

This election was greeted with much satisfaction by the people 
and jurors of the State, regardless of party affiliation. 

"He proved himself," says Dr. K. P. Battle, 103 North Carolina 
Reports, 501, "a sound and able judge, and his lofty character, in 
which all the virtues were harmoniously blended, his great popu- 
larity, gained by his unfailing courtesy and kindly heart, con- 
tinued and strengthened the public confidence in the court." As 
Mr. F. H. Busbee well said in an address presenting his portrait 
to the court, "Clear in his conception of the law, well versed in 
the precedents, of singular felicity of language and chasteness of 
expression, with a simplicity and terseness that would have hon- 
ored Westminster Hall, he has left opinions that may well bear 
comparison with those of his great co-laborers." 

In 1852, at the resignation of Judge Ruffin, he became chief 
justice of the court, and continued as such, with unimpaired 
faculties, though his health was failing, until his death, Decem- 
ber 4, 1858. 

In 1807 Judge Nash was elected a trustee of the University, 
and he continued an active friend of that institution until his 
death. 

For many years he was an elder in the Presbyterian Church, 
frequently attending its courts and taking part in their delib- 
erations. 

Personally, he was profoundly impressed with the imminence 
of Providence in all the afifairs of life. Consequently, he was a 
man of much prayer, and the controlling motive of his conduct 
was a sense of accountability to God. His religion was a very 
real thing to him, but he was too charitable, too loving, too broad- 
minded ever to have been a bigot, earnest churchman though he 



4IO 



NORTH CAROLINA 



certainly was. Into the scheme of life of a man so deeply, so 
spiritually religious, self-seeking could never enter. He was in- 
deed in public and in private affairs as unselfish as General Lee. 

Throughout his life he had the respect and confidence of the 
people of all parties, the love of many friends, the ardent devotion 
of his family and the hatred of no one ; and at his death he received 
from the Master, whom he had served so faithfully, the plaudit, 
"Well done." 

The children of Chief Justice Nash who survived him were 
Mrs. Isaac Read of Charlotte Court House, Virginia; Mrs. Ed- 
mund Strudwick of Hillsboro, North Carolina; Miss Sally K. 
Nash, principal of the Nash & KoUock School at Hillsboro ; Rev. 
Francis K. Nash, a Presbyterian minister of Floral College, North 
Carolina ; Henry K. Nash, a lawyer of Hillsboro ; and Miss Maria 
Nash of Hillsboro, who still lives, aged eighty-six years. 

Frank Nash. 





THOMAS POLLOCK 




CHEN North Carolina was a British dependency, 
the president of the Council in the colony 
ranked next to the governor, and became gov- 
ernor pro tempore when the chief magistrate 
died or absented himself from the colony. It 
is doubtful if any president of the Council exer- 
cised so great an influence on the life of the province as Thomas 
Pollock, who was acting governor for two terms. 

He was born in Scotland, at Glasgow, May 6, 1654. His father 
was Thomas Pollock of Balgray, in County Renfrew, and James 
Pollock of Balgray was an elder brother. It was on June 27, 1683, 
that he came to North Carolina. About the earliest record we 
have of his name is in 1691, when the charge was made against 
Governor Sothel that he imprisoned Mr. Pollock because that 
gentleman was preparing to go to England to lodge a complaint 
against the governor. Later, Governor Sothel was captured by 
Pollock and his friends and "clapt into a logg house," where he 
was kept unfil he renounced the government. In 1694 Mr. 
Pollock was a member of Governor Harvey's Council, which exer- 
cised the functions of a court of justice, and he was also a prac- 
ticing attorney. During the Cary Rebellion, Pollock sided against 
Cary, and temporarily removed to Virginia rather than live in 
the colony while dominated by the Cary faction. The arrival of 
Deputy Governor Edward Hyde was a source of much satisfaction 



412 NORTH CAROLINA 

to Pollock. Hyde arrived in the spring of 1710. At first he 
was president of the Council, and then governor, May 9, 1712. He 
died the same year, on September 8th, and "the Honorable Major- 
General Thomas Pollock" became acting governor on Septem- 
ber I2th, and wisely conducted the Indian War to a successful 
issue. He served as chief magistrate until May 28, 1714, when 
Charles Eden took the oath of office as governor. Before he 
became governor he was also instrumental in the settlement of 
the Swiss and German colony at New-Bern. For thirty years 
he was in the Council as deputy for one or another of the Lords 
Proprietors. On March 26, 1722, Eden died, and four days later, 
on March 30th, Pollock again became governor. This adminis- 
tration, however, was of short duration, for he was now an old 
man, and died in a few months, on August 30, 1722. Then 
William Reed, next in Council, became governor pro tempore 
until the arrival of Governor Burrington. 

For many years Mr. Pollock was a vestryman of Chowan Pre- 
cinct, and was also elected church warden, but chose to pay a 
fine, which the law required, rather than serve in the latter 
capacity. 

During President Pollock's residence in North Carolina he 
accumulated one of the largest fortunes ever held in the colony, 
and was the owner of immense tracts of land. He was twice 
married. His first wife, who was the mother of all his children, 
was Martha Cullen, who died in 1701. He married secondly Mrs. 
Esther Wilkinson, widow of Colonel William Wilkinson. Mr. 
Pollock had quite a number of children. One of his sons, Thomas 
Pollock, Jr., was chief justice of the colony. Though he now has 
many descendants. President Pollock has no descendants living 
who bear the name of Pollock. The late Thomas Pollock 
Devereux, an eminent lawyer, who was United States district 
attorney for North Carolina under President John Quincy Adams 
and Andrew Jackson, and also reporter of the State Supreme 
Court, was a lineal descendant of President Pollock. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 




■;,^tf-^^- £ 3.-^ /■n-' 






JETER CONLEY PRITCHARD 

I HE career of Honorable Jeter C. Pritchard, 
United States Circuit Judge for the Fourth 
District, presents a fine illustration of the 
beneficent results of our American system, 
which opens to the meritorious a pathway to 
fame and fosters a noble ambition even among 
those who would seem to have but small opportunities to achieve 
distinction. 

Judge Pritchard's beginning in life was by no means hopeful, 
he being without money and without friends, and his early man- 
hood being passed in a mountain region secluded from public 
observation and remote from the busy marts of the world ; yet 
step by step by the native powers of his mind and by close ad- 
herence to an honorable course of action, he has risen to an exalted 
judicial station and may well indulge the expectation of attaining 
to even higher eminence. 

His father, William H. Pritchard, whose ancestors were Welsh, 
the name being sometimes written Pritchett, was a carpenter and 
builder, living at Jonesboro, Tennessee, where he married Eliza- 
beth Brown, whose ancestors were Irish, and where the subject 
of this sketch was born on the 12th day of July, 1857. Mr. Pritchard 
was an earnest, hard-working man and pursued his vocation with 
such vigor and determination that he had only little leisure, but 
being fond of reading, he devoted what time he could spare to 



414 NORTH CAROLINA 

his favorite books. During the war between the States, the people 
of that section of Tennessee were much divided in sentiment, but 
Mr. Pritchard's resolute and determined character led him to 
actively espouse the side of the South ; and he enlisted in Colonel 
John H. Crawford's regiment of East Tennesseans, being the 
Sixtieth Tennessee Regiment, which at the siege of Vicksburg 
won repeated encomiums for its bravery and resolute conduct; 
and after the surrender of Vicksburg, Mr. Pritchard fell a victim 
to disease, dying in Mobile, Alabama. 

During those times of distress, when the subject of this sketch 
was still a little child, his mother was subjected to all the privations 
which the impoverished widows of unfortunate soldiers had to 
experience. He was but eight years of age when peace came, 
and although his mother nurtured him to the best of a scant abil- 
ity, she could afford him neither an education nor a comfortable 
maintenance. Still she happily exerted a strong influence on his 
moral life, and instilled into his youthful mind those sound pre- 
cepts of morality which have been the basis of his character. At 
the age of twelve, having had so little training at school that he 
was unable to write, he was apprenticed to learn the printer's 
trade, that being deemed a desirable method of securing a prac- 
tical education, while it afforded a better opening to future ad- 
vancement than labor on a farm. Nor was his mother disap- 
pointed in her hopes. The young apprentice was responsive to 
her impulses, and animated by a purpose to improve his condi- 
tion, he made the best of his opportunities, and overcoming his 
early deficiencies, made such rapid progress at his trade that at 
the end of his apprenticeship he was employed as foreman of 
the Union Flag office at Jonesboro. 

In the spring of 1874, when not yet seventeen years of age, he 
left Jonesboro to take the position of foreman on the Bakers- 
ville Independent, at Bakersville, North Carolina. His circum- 
stances, however, were still so poor that he was compelled to 
make thirty-five miles of the journey on foot, and he arrived at 
his destination with only ten cents in his pocket and no more 
clothing than he carried on his back. 



JETER CONLEY PRITCHARD 415 

Here his talents and capacity found gratifying reward, and 
stimulated by an invincible resolution to succeed, he overcame 
all difficulties, and later became the joint owner and associate 
editor of the Independent. 

And he also found himself able to perfect his education by 
attending the Odd Fellows' Institute and Martin's Creek Acad- 
emy in Tennessee. 

Eventually circumstances induced him to remove to Madison 
County, North Carolina, and in 1885, being then well known as 
an active Republican leader, he represented that county in the 
Assembly, and again in 1887; and in the Assembly he made his 
mark and attained prominence by reason of the clearness of his 
views and the intellectual vigor with which he maintained them. 
Living on a farm, he not only performed the manual labor re- 
quired in his work, but applied himself to the study of the law. 
This was necessarily accomplished at great disadvantage. In 
the absence of an instructor, it was his habit after reading a 
chapter to frame questions and answer them, and then to com- 
pare the result with the text-book, thus correcting his inaccuracies 
and impressing the subject on his memory. He obtained his 
license in 1887, and entered at once on a practice that soon became 
lucrative. 

In the Assembly he had been chief among the Republican lead- 
ers, and his course had attracted the attention of his party friends 
throughout the State, so that in 1888 he was nominated as the 
Republican candidate for lieutenant-governor, and the extended 
campaign he then made enhanced his reputation. He again repre- 
sented his county in the Assembly in 1891, and being now re- 
garded as one of the strongest of the Republican leaders, he 
received the honor of being the caucus nominee of his party 
for the Senate of the United States. At the next election he was 
brought forward for Congress from the ninth district, where 
the Republican strength had been weakened by placing Mitchell 
County in another district; and although Mr. Pritchard made 
gains in many of the counties, he was unable to defeat his Demo- 
cratic opponent. That was a disastrous campaign to the Repub- 



4i6 NORTH CAROLINA 

lican Party generally throughout the Union, but Mr. Pritchard 
had the satisfaction of knowing that he had made gains for his 
party, of which but few other districts in the Union could boast. 

The political situation in the State was now greatly changed 
by the growth of the Farmers' Alliance, and its separation from 
the old parties and the establishment of the Populist Party, as 
well as by the disorganization of the Democratic Party incident 
to the Cleveland administration, which had become excessively 
unpopular among the people of North Carolina. It was apparent 
that by consolidating the strength of the Republican and Populist 
parties into a single organized opposition, the Democratic Party 
would be defeated in the State. With that end in view Mr. 
Pritchard began negotiations with the PopuHst leaders for a co- 
operative campaign by which in counties where the Populists were 
numerous the Republicans would support their candidates, and 
in counties where the Republicans were numerous the PopuHsts 
would support their nominees. The co-operation was entirely suc- 
cessful and the legislature was strongly anti-Democratic. 

Because of the death of Senator Vance and the expiration of 
Senator Ransom's term, two senators were to be chosen by that 
Assembly; and Mr. Pritchard was elected to Vance's unexpired 
term, while Honorable Marion Butler was chosen for the long 
term. At the next election a yet closer alliance was made between 
the Republican and Populist parties, and a State ticket headed 
by Honorable D. L. Russell was agreed on, and again was the 
co-operative movement successful, resulting in the defeat of the 
Democratic State ticket and in the election of an opposition legis- 
lature, which in January, 1897, re-elected Senator Pritchard to 
the Senate for a term of six years. In addition to his position 
as United States senator, Mr. Pritchard also served as chairman 
of his party in the State and as national committeeman, and he 
entered largely into the successive campaigns in North Carolina, 
developing a resourcefulness as a public speaker and making 
masterly addresses that established his reputation as being the 
best-equipped and the strongest Republican leader that had ap- 
peared in the State in many vears. 



JETER CONLEY PRITCHARD 417 

In the Senate, Mr. Pritchard was the only representative his 
party had from the Southern States, and he soon found himself 
freely consulted by the President and his Republican colleagues 
in the Senate, touching all matters that related to Southern affairs. 
In this position of adviser to the administration about Southern 
matters. Senator Pritchard sustained himself so v^^ell as to win 
increasing confidence. His careful recommendations tended to 
strengthen his influence and bring him still greater prominence 
in the administration of public matters, while his speeches in 
the Senate gained him reputation and won him favor, because 
of their superior merit and being on the same plane as the best 
addresses of the experienced Republican senators from the North- 
ern States. 

In the campaign of 1900, the Democrats were again restored 
to power; and in 1903, Senator Overman was chosen to succe'ed 
Senator Pritchard, whose term was to expire in March, 1903. 
On leaving the Senate Mr. Pritchard was employed by the South- 
ern Railroad as assistant division counsel, with headquarters at 
Asheville; but on the first day of April, a vacanc)^ having oc- 
curred. President Roosevelt appointed him Associate Justice of 
the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, and he entered on 
a judicial career that speedily won for him great reputation and 
gave the highest satisfaction to his friends. But few jurists have 
ever gained such substantial reputation in so short a period as 
Judge Pritchard did while in this position ; and upon the death 
of Judge Simonton, the President, on the 28th of April, 1904, ap- 
pointed him Judge of the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fourth 
Circuit, and he qualified on June ist. 

One of the celebrated cases in modern criminal annals was the 
case of Machem and others, tried by Judge Pritchard while a 
member of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia. This 
trial lasted seven weeks and involved many new points of law 
and was fought on each side with great bitterness and astuteness. 
During its progress a multitude of exceptions were taken to the 
rulings of the court, but notwithstanding the judge was sitting 
in a strange jurisdiction and many novel questions were raised 



4i8 NORTH CAROLINA 

for the first time in that jurisdiction, yet on appeal to the Court 
of Appeals and to the Supreme Court, all of his rulings were 
affirmed. In his new judicial capacity, he has manifested equal 
capabilities and his superior excellence as a judge. Immediately 
after his appointment as United States Circuit Judge, he granted 
a writ of Habeas Corpus in re Josephus Daniels, who had been 
adjudged guilty of contempt of court by the district judge at 
Raleigh, and on the return of the writ two days later, he discharged 
Mr. Daniels. The Judge wrote a lengthy and exhaustive opinion 
in this case, stating the reasons for his action in the premises as 
well as the general law of contempt applicable to the courts of the 
United States. This opinion has been quoted generally by the 
American press throughout the Union, as well as by all the lead- 
ing papers in foreign countries, and their comments have ex- 
pressed the most favorable opinion of this decision. 

Another case which has attracted much attention is the cele- 
brated one of Folsom v. Ninety-Six Township from South Caro- 
lina. The legislature of South Carolina by the adoption of an 
amendment to the constitution of the State abolished the cor- 
porate entity of certain townships which had issued bonds in aid 
of the construction of a railroad ; and also by legislative enact- 
ment the territory originally embraced in this township was trans- 
ferred to a new county known as Greenwood for the purpose of 
invalidating the securities issued. Judge Pritchard sustained the 
validity of the securities. 

Another important and far-reaching decision rendered by the 
judge was in the case of Folsom et al. vs. Greenwood County 
from South Carolina. Novel principles of law as well as im- 
portant interests were involved in these decisions, which were 
made by the judge without any direct precedent to guide him. 
But his adjudications have been esteemed by the profession as 
sound and based on the foundation principles of the law. 

On the bench, he is fair and impartial and courteous as he has 
ever been in his deportment. When his term as United States 
senator expired, his friends, irrespective of party affiliations, pre- 
sented him with a beautiful silver service and a chest of silver, 



JETER CONLEY PRITCHARD 419 

the presentation speech being made by Honorable Richmond 
Pearson; and when he resigned the position of Associate Justice 
of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, the members 
of the bar of the city held a meeting, at which resolutions were 
unanimously adopted expressing appreciation of his course as a 
jurist, and through its chairman. Honorable Henry Davis, he 
was presented with a beautiful punch bowl. 

During his term as judge of the Supreme Court of the district, 
Judge Pritchard also served as a member of the Faculty of 
Georgetown University, as law lecturer, in which capacity he 
gave general satisfaction. 

While Judge Pritchard has not formally connected himself with 
any religious denomination, he believes in the doctrine of the Bap- 
tist Church. Outside of his law books he has devoted most time 
in reading the Bible, Shakespeare, and other classics, while he 
has found particular pleasure in the writings of Scott and Dickens. 

It was in reading the life of Henry Clay that he received his 
strongest impulse to strive for the higher honors of a public 
career, and he considers that the influences which were most 
effective in bringing him success were the training he received at 
Sunday-school, his contact with active men, and his observations 
and reflections on the lives of distinguished characters. 

In his opinion, the young men of our country would be bene- 
fited if they would practice the following precepts: Be diligent 
and prompt. Do not use any intoxicating liquors whatever; and 
in all matters be entirely frank and honest. 

On the i8th day of September, 1887, Senator Pritchard was 
married to Miss Augusta L. Ray, by whom he had four boys and 
one daughter, the latter afterward becoming the wife of Mr. 
Thomas L. Rollins of Asheville ; and on the 14th day of Novem- 
ber, 1903, he married Miss Lillian E. Saum of Washington City. 

.S". A. Ashe. 




MATT WHITAKER RANSOM 




ENERAL MATT WHITAKER RANSOM, 
distinguished as a soldier, statesman, scholar, 
and orator, and by his public services and 
influence upon the people of North Carolina 
the most illustrious citizen of the State, was 
born in Warren County on October 8, 1826. 
Both in the paternal and maternal lines he was connected with 
large and influential families. His father, Robert Ransom, was a 
man of superior intelligence, the son of Seymour Ransom, who 
was a half brother of Honorable Nathaniel Macon; while his 
mother, Priscilla Whitaker, was a member of a family that had 
long been distinguished in Halifax County. 

In his youth General Ransom was a handsome boy, whose fea- 
tures beamed with intelligence and whose manners were very 
prepossessing. He mingled freely with older persons and had a 
dignified but agreeable carriage. From boyhood he was ambi- 
tious of acquiring knowledge and attaining distinction, and at the 
Warrenton Academy, where he obtained his preparatory educa- 
tion, he gave evidence of such remarkable ability as to attract 
particular attention. In 1843 he entered the State University, 
where he graduated with high credit, having divided the first 
honors with James Johnston Pettigrew, who was regarded as a 
prodigy in scholarship, especially in mathematics. While at the 
University he took as a part of his collegiate course the study 





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MATT WHTfAKER RANSOM 421 

of law, being instructed by the late Honorable William H. Battle, 
and he was prepared to take his place at the bar before attaining 
the age of twenty-one. Among the other young men of his day 
he was already distinguished when he entered life, and his debut 
at the bar was brilliant, and attracted the attention not only of the 
friends of his family, but of the public men of the State gener- 
ally. His father was a zealous Whig, and raised under Whig 
influences, he naturally became an adherent of that party. In 
addition to his fine person, captivating manners and superior 
talents, he was gifted with eloquence and with high oratorical 
powers, and soon becoming famous as an orator, he was pressed 
forward by his party friends. 

In 1852 he was nominated as a Presidential elector. General 
Scott and Honorable William A. Graham of Orange County be- 
ing the Whig Presidential candidates, and he made a memorable 
campaign in their advocacy. A few months later, on the meet- 
ing of the Assembly, although a majority of that body was Demo- 
cratic, he was at the age of twenty-six elected attorney-general 
of the State, in competition with Honorable William Eaton, a 
Democrat and lawyer of the highest reputation both as to learn- 
ing and character. The peculiar traits which led to this political 
achievement at that early age have been discernible throughout 
his entire career; his fine address, his knowledge of men and his 
capacity to interest them in his advancement and the promotion 
of his purposes, have been distinguishing features throughout his 
public life. After three years of service as attorney-general, dur- 
ing which he administered that ofHce with great credit, he 
deemed it proper to resign, for new political issues having arisen, 
he was constrained to separate himself from the Whig Party, 
to whom he chiefly owed his election. He could not follow them 
in their new attitude toward the Roman Catholics and foreign- 
born citizens, nor sympathize with Know-Nothingism ; and he 
thus naturally drifted into association with his former antago- 
nists. Having married Miss Exum, a daughter of Joseph Exum, 
Esq., of Northampton County, a lady of rare loveliness of char- 
acter, and of fine feminine accomplishments, he moved his resi- 



422 NORTH CAROLINA 

dence to that county, and in 1858 he was elected to represent 
Northampton in the legislature as a Democrat, and again in 
i860. At that time portentous events were casting their shad- 
ows over the land, and lawyer and planter and public man as he 
was, he deprecated violent measures that tended to unrest and to 
the disorganization of established government; and from a deep- 
seated conviction that the welfare of the South would not be pro- 
moted by secession, he declared himself a pronounced Union man, 
and he was selected along with Governor Swain and John L. 
Bridgers of Edgecombe County, as a commissioner to visit the 
State of Alabama with the hope of averting the calamities of 
civil war. But when in April, 1861, Mr. Lincoln called on the 
South to furnish troops to coerce the seceding States he did not 
hesitate to espouse the cause of Southern independence. 

On the organization of the First Regiment of State troops, on 
the 1st of May, 1861, Governor Ellis appointed him lieutenant- 
colonel of that regiment, and he served with it in Virginia until, 
upon the reorganization of the Thirty-fifth Regiment, he was, on 
April 12, 1862, elected colonel of the Thirty-fifth, with which he 
continued to be associated during the remainder of the war. 
After some preliminary service his regiment participated in the 
battles around Richmond, where Colonel Ransom displayed great 
gallantry and won a fine reputation, and at Malvern Hill, while 
leading a charge, he was twice wounded, once through the right 
arm, and again by a shell, which struck him on the side. His 
regiment had been assigned to a brigade commanded by his 
brother. General Robert Ransom, which remained in the defenses 
before Richmond when General Lee made his campaign against 
General Pope; but being ordered to rejoin General Lee, on the 
7th of September, it reached the Potomac and participated in 
the battle of Sharpsburg. General J. G. Walker, the commander 
of the division, in his report of that battle, says : "During this 
time, in the temporary absence of General Robert Ransom to 
post the Twenty-fourth Regiment, which had gone too much to 
the left, the enemy made a furious attack with heavy masses of 
infantry upon the position occupied by General Ransom. Colonel 



MATT WHITAKER RANSOM 423 

Ransom of the Thirty-fifth North Carolina, in temporary com- 
mand of the brigade, not only repulsed the enemy, but pursued 
him across the field as far as the post and rail fences, inflicting 
upon him so severe a punishment that no other attempt with 
infantry was made on the position during the day." In the his- 
tory of the Thirty-fifth Regiment, Colonel Burgwyn says : "Fear- 
ing his men were wavering. Colonel Ransom, who was on horse- 
back, with his right arm in a sling, spurred to the color-bearer 
and called for the flag. This was seized by one of the young 
officers of the regiment and handed to the colonel, who, calling 
upon the men to be firm and follow him, went forwards. With- 
out hesitation the regiment advanced and drove the enemy from 
its front with great loss." But Colonel Ransom's wounds re- 
ceived at Malvern Hill had not sufficiently healed, and' on 
October 14th, after the army had retired to Virginia, he felt 
obliged to return home for treatment, and for a period he was 
separated from his command. On the 3d of January, 1863, the 
brigade was ordered to North Carolina, and it remained on duty 
confronting the enemy on our seacoast until the following June. 
On the 15th of that month. General Robert Ransom was promoted 
to be major-general; and the officers of the several regiments in 
the brigade unanimously recommended that Colonel Ransom 
should be appointed to succeed him, and he received the appoint- 
ment of brigadier-general over the three senior colonels in the 
brigade. His brigade was again assigned to the defense of Rich- 
mond, where it remained during the month of July, 1863, when it 
was ordered to return and protect Eastern North Carolina. 
Arriving at Weldon, General Ransom, whose brigade consisted 
of the Twenty-fourth, Twenty-fifth, Thirty-fifth and Forty-ninth 
North Carolina regiments, at once engaged the enemy and drove 
them from that vicinity, saving the corps, and restoring quiet to 
that region, which was the richest portion of the State, and the 
storehouse from which the Confederate Government obtained large 
supplies. That winter his brigade remained in the department 
of North Carolina, then under Major-General Pickett, and on 
March 9, 1864, General Ransom, with his brigade and a cavalry 



424 NORTH CAROLINA 

force, drove the Federals from Suffolk, Virginia, capturing stores 
of much value. A month later General Hoke was detailed to cap- 
ture Plymouth, Ransom's brigade being a part of the force as- 
signed to his command. 

On the 29th of April, 1864, General Ransom, under General 
Hoke's directions, stormed the Federal works, losing 87 killed 
and more than 500 wounded. He drove the enemy from their 
position, capturing some 2000 prisoners, the remainder taking 
refuge in their main fortification. Fort Williams, and after dis- 
positions had been made to storm that fort, they raised the white 
flag and surrendered. This was one of the most brilHant victories 
of the war, and Brigadier-General Hoke was telegraphed by Pres- 
ident Davis his promotion to be major-general, and the legisla- 
ture of North Carolina, then in session, by formal resolution, ten- 
dered the thanks of the State to Generals Hoke and Ransom, 
and Commander J. W. Cooke, of the ram Albemarle, and the 
officers and men under their command ; and the Confederate 
Congress passed similar resolutions. General Hoke, accompanied 
by General Ransom, with his brigade, now moved rapidly on to 
Washington, North Carolina, which the Federal force hastily 
evacuated, and then they pushed on to New-Bern, and at once 
invested that city, capturing its outer works, and were in readi- 
ness for the final assault, when General Hoke received peremptory 
orders, requiring him to withdraw his command in order to pro- 
tect Richmond. Making one of the most rapid marches on 
record, Ransom's brigade reached Petersburg on May loth, just 
in time to aid in the defense of Drewry's Bluff, the brigade being 
attacked by Butler's advance with overwhelming force. On the 
next day, while rallying his line of sharpshooters, General Ran- 
som was badly wounded in the left arm, both the bones of the 
forearm being shattered, which again led to his temporary sepa- 
ration from his command. He returned to it, however, during 
the siege of Petersburg, and on the 25th of March, 1865, he com- 
manded Wallace's South Carolina Brigade and his own in the 
assault of Fort Steadman. Of this brilliant but disastrous affair, 
General Lee says in his report: "The two brigades commanded 



MATT WHITAKER RANSOM 425 

by General Ransom behaved most handsomely." At Five Forks, 
a week later, General Ransom had two horses killed under him, 
and with his woimded left arm in a sling, he was about to be 
crushed under the struggles of his dying horse, when Captain 
Johnston and Captain Sherrill rushed forward and extricated him 
from his perilous situation and saved him from capture. He con- 
tinued with General Lee until the end, and was parolled on the 
field of Appomattox. 

On the return of peace and during the period of reconstruc- 
tion, General Ransom, realizing that the cause of the South was 
lost, believed that it was the better part for the Southern men to 
submit to the inevitable consequences of their defeat without 
unmanly repining. He desired as far as he could to have the people 
adapt themselves to the changed conditions in their affairs, and 
at Henderson, in 1869, he delivered an eloquent address to the 
thousands who were assembled at the agricultural fair, and pre- 
sented his views strongly and clearly. It was in this spirit that 
in a memorial address at the dedication of the Confederate Sol- 
diers' Cemetery, at Raleigh, he said : "I thank God that there are 
flowers enough in this beautiful land of the South to strew alike 
upon the graves of those who fell in the gray and in the blue ; and 
that there are hearts large enough arid hands gentle and generous 
enough to perform this holy duty." But General Ransom took 
no prominent part in political matters in that period of unrest 
and political disorganization. He, however, performed a great 
service to the State and to society in the summer of 1870, when 
civil war was settling over the State, and Chief Justice Pearson 
declined to require obedience to his writ of Habeas Corpus, and 
declared that the powers of the judiciary were exhausted, offer- 
ing no relief to the hundreds of citizens who were unlawfully 
detained by Colonel Kirk in his military camp. In this emergency 
General Ransom hastened to Elizabeth City, and on his urgent 
appeal Federal Judge George W. Brooks issued his writ of Habeas 
Corpus, requiring that the detained citizens should be brought 
before him for examination into the cause of their detention, 
which led to their immediate liberation. This prompt action on 



426 NORTH CAROLINA 

the part of General Ransom and Judge Brooks cleared the atmos- 
phere and removed conditions that threatened a resort to arms 
by the people of the State. The legislature elected in 1870 was 
Conservative, and it had to choose a United States senator. 
It was considered by many that General Ransom was the 
most fit man to represent North Carolina in the Senate 
at that time, because, having been a fighting general and a devoted 
Confederate, he yet had the traits and characteristics that in per- 
sonal intercourse with the radical leaders in the Senate chamber 
would tend to disarm their animosities and secure the South from 
hostile legislation. For twenty-five ballots there was a tie, and 
no nomination in the caucus ; but at length, by one vote. Governor 
Vance was nominated, with the understanding that if his dis- 
abilities should not be removed, he would resign in time for that 
legislature to elect another senator in his stead. This he did in 
the spring of 1872, and General Ransom was at once elected 
senator and took his seat, and by re-election, from time to time, 
continued to serve until March, 1895, having been elected four 
times to the United States Senate. 

In 1892 the Farmers' Alliance became very strong in North 
Carolina, and in the fall of that year formed a new poHtical party, 
called the People's Party, or Populists. Unfortunately, Mr. 
Cleveland, who was elected President in that year, differed widely 
from the Democrats on the silver question and on financial mat- 
ters, and his administration became very unpopular in the State. 
Senator Vance did not follow the lead of the President, and was 
in sympathy with the North Carolina Democrats ; he died, and 
to fill the vacancy caused by his death. Governor Jarvis was ap- 
pointed to the Senate. When the election of 1894 came on, the 
legislature then to be chosen had to fill both senatorships, and 
Senator Jarvis, not desiring to stand for the Western term, an- 
nounced that he sought a re-election to the Senate as an Eastern 
senator, which necessarily threw him into antagonism with Sen- 
ator Ransom. Senator Ransom had stood by the President, and 
sought to sustain the administration, and he made a bold and 
thorough canvass of the State in the defense of his position and 



MATT WHITAKER RANSOM 427 

urging the people not to repudiate the national Democratic admin- 
istration. The campaign that year in North Carolina, because 
of the importance of the issues, and of the dissatisfaction of the 
people, and of the fortunes of the men and parties involved, was 
one of the most memorable in the history of the State. The 
Populist Party, by adroitly fusing with the Republicans in the 
several counties, secured a majority in the legislature opposed 
to the Democrats, with the result of controlling both Houses and 
electing two senators. Judge Pritchard and Senator Butler, to 
succeed Senators Ransom and Jarvis. This political disaster 
turned the State over to the opponents of the Democratic Party, 
and resulted in the retirement of Senator Ransom as a representa- 
tive of the State in the Senate ; otherwise, he probably would have 
remained in the Senate during his entire life. However, shortly 
afterward. President Cleveland conferred upon him the position 
of Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary to Mexico, 
a post of high honor which General Ransom filled with distin- 
guished ability, until his successor was appointed by President 
McKinley ; and since that time he has remained at his home in 
Northampton attending to his agricultural interests, he being 
one of the largest landed proprietors and most successful planters 
in the State. 

During his twenty-three years of service in the Senate, Gen- 
eral Ransom was of great use to the people of North Carolina, 
to the South and to his country. In a large measure he answered 
the expectations of those who hoped that he would be instru- 
mental in assuaging the animosities of Northern senators, and he 
declared his sentiments fearlessly and faithfully. In his great 
speech of February 15, 1875, on "The South Faithful to Her 
Duties," he uttered the keynote of his conduct as a Southern 
senator: "I came from the true State of North Carolina to the 
Senate of the United States with a sacred purpose to reconcile 
the once divided people of my country, to harmonize all sectional 
diflferences and disputes, to bury in oblivion every bitter recol- 
lection of war, and to convince the people of the North that our 
people of the South sincerely desired to live with them in concord 



428 NORTH CAROLINA 

under the common protection of a constitutional and united gov- 
ernment. Before this greatest and best desire of my life, the 
desire of having a part in restoring the union of the States firmly 
in the hearts of all our people, all other passions sank into insig- 
nificance. This vifas the great object of my political existence. 
To accomplish it, no sacrifice seemed too dear, except the dis- 
honor of my State and the South." 

If he failed at first, it was because of the fierce fanaticism and 
narrow prejudices of his Northern associates; certainly he did 
his part, and did it well ; and he lived to see the almost total oblit- 
eration of the hatred which the war had caused between the sec- 
tions. But his chief value in the Senate was because of his 
wisdom in party councils. Often by his wise advice he rendered 
inestimable service to the Democratic Party and to the South 
and his country; and he attained great influence that was potent 
for good throughout all administrations. 

His action on the Cloiture Resolution to secure the passage 
of the Force Bill was of supreme importance. Senator Morgan, 
after detailing the circumstances under which Senator Ransom 
defeated the effect of an outrage, that the Vice-president as pre- 
siding officer of the Senate, had perpetrated to bring the Force 
Bill up, said : "You see from this incident that I do not over- 
value the sagacity, courage, and usefulness of General Ransom 
on that occasion." Indeed, to Senator Ransom is chiefly to be 
ascribed the great patriotic service of saving the country from that 
atrocious measure. During his long service in the Senate he was 
high in party councils, and wielded a strong influence on all 
measures affecting the South and the fortunes of the Democratic 
Party. 

As an illustration of his character, a single anecdote must suf- 
fice : In 1892 the Farmers' Alliance permeated and controlled the 
Democratic Party in North Carolina, and its leaders were seek- 
ing with great adroitness to undermine the fealty and attachment 
of their followers to that party, preparing for the event which 
happened a few months later in the same year, the formation of 
a new political organization. Their power and control inside of 



MATT WHITAKER RANSOM 429 

the Democratic organization was so great that but few public 
men chose to antagonize them, and the laboring oar fell exclu- 
sively on the editor of the Nezvs and Observer, who almost alone 
combated their designs, with the view of preserving the integrity 
of the Democratic Party. At that time Senator Ransom ap- 
proached the editor of the News and Observer, and narrated the 
following incident : He said that when he was a young man, there 
being several of his associates at his home, they began to discuss 
what virtue was most to be desired in life. One said Roman for- 
titude ; another, purity in life ; some one thing and some another. 
Not being able to agree, they concluded to submit the matter to 
his grandfather, an old gentleman who was very much revered 
and respected. When they approached him with their question 
and he heard them all in turn, he answered : "The most desirable 
of all virtues is courage; courage without which no other virtue 
can be fully exercised, and with which every other virtue can 
easily be fostered." 

That was the keynote to the life of General Ransom, — courage. 
He was courageous in action, whether on the battlefield or in the 
equally important contests of civil life. 

As an orator. General Ransom was superb, his powers being of 
the highest order. Some of his campaign speeches were master- 
ful, so eloquent, so powerful that well-informed men have declared 
that they could not be equaled by any other living American. 

After retiring from public life, he resided on his farm in North- 
ampton County, surrounded by his children, and interested in 
his agricultural operations, and always attending the annual 
reunions of the Confederate soldiers, for whom he treasured the 
warmest affection, until suddenly on the 8th day of October, 1904, 
he passed away almost without premonition, from heart failure. 

In closing a sketch of his life, Mr. Caldwell, the editor of the 
Charlotte Observer, says: "He was our fullest scholar; our most 
accomplished diplomat ; the handsomest man among us ; the ablest 
man ; the man who did us most credit in the eyes of the country. 
He is indeed the last of the Romans." 

S. A. Ashe. 




WILLIAM McKENDREE ROBBINS 




'AJOR WILLIAM McKENDREE ROBBINS, 
distinguished as a soldier and a civilian, and 
for a quarter of a century the most prominent 
citizen of Statesville, is a native of Randolph 
County. 

His ancestor, William Robbins, coming from 
Gloucester County, Virginia, in 1763, settled in that part of 
Rowan which afterward became a portion of Randolph, and 
there the family continued to reside in the full enjoyment of the 
respect and esteem of the people of that county. The father of 
Major Robbins, Ahi Robbins, was a planter, whose marked char- 
acteristics were piety and industry ; and he also realized the 
material advantage of literary culture, and determined that his 
children should receive such an education as would fit them to 
succeed in the battle of life. He married Mary Brown, one of 
the best of women, whose tenderness and affection in her family 
circle exerted a potent influence upon the character of her chil- 
dren. The eldest son, the subject of this sketch, was born Octo- 
ber 26, 1828, and growing up on his father's farm, passed the 
winters at school, and was occupied during the summers helping 
at such work as a boy could do. His physical condition was ex- 
cellent, and being robust and of a bright mind, he was not only 
fond of the country pastimes, but early fell into the habit of 
reading with avidity the books that were selected for his perusal. 




- G ^-fZ-'/iJ-TV.- ^_^-~<. /.-^ 






fS'^.j-S L f-^t //aii/,^-, /^ui 



WILLIAM McKENDREE ROBBINS 431 

At first he attended the "old field" schools, that were then common 
in North Carolina, and afterward a neighboring academy, and 
when well prepared, he entered Randolph-Macon College, where 
he graduated in 185 1 with the first distinction. At college he was 
an apt pupil, and being ambitious to excel, and endowed with 
fine mental powers, he became very proficient in his studies ; and 
indeed, since his graduation he has been a close student, con- 
tinuing to acquire learning beyond most men after they engage 
in the activities of life. 

For a year or two after graduating, he was employed as Pro- 
fessor of Mathematics at Trinity College, then in operation near 
High Point, where he also taught some classes in the languages ; 
but the sedentary life of a teacher did not agree with him, and 
having determined on a new career, he studied law, and in 1855 
moved to Alabama and entered on the practice in that State. 

Ardent in his love for the South, strong in his convictions and 
with the courage to maintain them, when Alabama called her sons 
to arms, he joined the Marion Rifles, and on the 12th day of 
January, 1861, proceeded with that company, which then took pos- 
session of Fort Morgan, at the mouth of Mobile Bay, and there 
remained until March, when he, aiding in organizing the Fourth 
Alabama Regiment, and as first lieutenant of Company G of that 
regiment, on the 24th of April accompanied it to Harper's Ferry, 
then held by General Joe Johnston. He continued with that regi- 
ment all through the war, sharing its vicissitudes, and after attain- 
ing the rank of major, at times leading it into battle. At first 
Manassas he was standing in the presence of General Bee, when 
that intrepid officer said, "Look, yonder stands Jackson like a 
stone wall, and we will go to his assistance," and the Fourth Ala- 
bama did rush to his assistance, and the lamented Bee fell while 
leading that regiment to the aid of Jackson, ever since then known 
to fame as "Stonewall." 

Major Robbins was with his regiment in the hottest fire at 
Seven Pines, and in the seven days' battle around Richmond ; and 
after the formation of Longstreet's corps, his regiment was 
assigned to that command, and he was under that stubborn 



432 NORTH CAROLINA 

fighter at second Manassas, South Mountain, Sharpsburg, Fred- 
ericksburg, and Gettysburg. And along with his regiment, he 
accompanied General Longstreet to the West, and fought in the 
desperate battle of Chickamauga, and at Knoxville. Returning to 
the army of Northern Virginia in time to join in the battle of the 
Wilderness, he was desperately wounded in that hard-fought 
engagement. After his wounds had healed, he rejoined his regi- 
ment at Petersburg, and continued with General Lee until the 
flag was furled at Appomattox. During the whole bloody contest. 
Major Robbiiis was distinguished for his courage and powers of 
endurance, undergoing the hardships of the camp, the trying 
marches and fearful experiences of the battlefield, with a gallantry 
that was natural to his brave and manly heart, and always pos- 
sessing the confidence of his soldiers, and receiving the warm 
commendation of his superiors. In the course of his eventful 
career he was subjected to innumerable perils, but while receiving 
several scratches, he had the good fortune to escape with but one 
serious wound, the eiifect of which, however, has remained with 
him through life. 

The condition of affairs in Alabama in 1865 was not hopeful, 
while in North Carolina President Johnson had quickly inter- 
vened, and greater progress had been made toward the restora- 
tion of the State to the Union; and his neighbor in Randolph, 
Jonathan Worth, had been elected governor of the State. So 
in December of 1865, Major Robbins abandoned his home in 
Alabama, and returning to North Carolina, opened his law office 
in Salisbury. 

But the malignant Republicans in Congress were not content, 
and having the power, they annulled the government of North 
Carolina, threw the State under the dominion of a major-general, 
and investing the negroes with right of suffrage, instituted a 
new government for the State. In the meantime. Major Robbins 
had taken a bold stand as a Southern white man, and his powers 
as a public speaker becoming known, he was brought forward 
for the legislature, and in April, 1868, was elected to the Senate 
for the district composed of Rowan and Davie counties. The 



WILLIAM McKENDREE ROBBINS 433 

Republicans had a great majority in both Houses, and while some 
were reckless in their disregard of the people's interest, others 
who assumed the leadership were freeboooters, engaged in looting 
the treasury and the public institutions of the State, and the pro- 
tests of the few Conservatives of the body, under the leadership of 
Thomas J. Jarvis, Plato Durham, John Graham, and Major Rob- 
bins, were given no consideration. But at length, after $24,000,000 
of State bonds had been issued, and so rapidly thrown on the 
market that they fell to a mere nominal value, the frauds of the 
bond manipulators became so apparent that the strenuous efforts 
of the little band of Conservatives, including Major Robbins, took 
quick effect, and all the bonds unsold were directed to be returned 
to the Treasury, and the further spoliation of the State was 
averted. Those were trying times in North Carolina, the period 
of the Kirk War, the suspension of the writ of Habeas Corpus, 
the abdication of judicial power by the Supreme Court, and amid 
all of the experiences of that day. Major Robbins performed his 
whole duty as a brave man, battling for the rights and liberties 
of the people. 

At the next election, in 1870, he was returned to the Senate, but 
the excesses and tyrannies of the Republican administration had 
turned the people away from its support, and both Houses were 
now under the control of the Conservatives. The House of 
Representatives at once preferred articles of impeachment against 
Governor Holden, which were tried by the Senate, of which 
Major Robbins was a member, and he voted for the conviction 
of the governor and his deposition from office. In the legislature 
Major Robbins took a prominent part, and was a leading mem- 
ber. He gave to public matters a calm consideration and brought 
to their discussion a lofty patriotism. At the next election, in 
1872, so great was his reputation and the confidence reposed in 
him, that he was nominated for Congress, and elected by a 
majority of 1600 over Judge Furches, and again in 1874 and in 
1876, his majorities in both of these elections being over 4000. 
During his six years' service in Congress, he was a painstak- 
ing and intelligent representative, and was regarded on the floor 



434 NORTH CAROLINA 

of the House as well-informed, trustworthy and able. His atten- 
tion to business was remarkable, for he was never absent from 
his place and never failed to have his vote recorded. His views 
were clear and well defined, and he was strong in presenting them 
to the attention of his fellow-members. In particular were his 
speeches on the Civil Rights Bill, the Internal Revenue and the 
Tariff considered able, comprehensive and vigorous, and they won 
him great applause throughout the State. Indeed, he achieved 
such a high position of influence and usefulness in Congress, that, 
notwithstanding he was a Southern member, the second place on 
the Committee of Ways and Means was accorded him during 
his last session in Congress. 

Resuming his professional work in 1879, he prosecuted it with 
such zeal and energy that, together with his partner. Judge Long, 
he built up a large and lucrative business. Although deeply en- 
gaged in his practice, he took a lively interest in all the questions 
of the day, social, educational and industrial, as well as political, 
and sought to perform his duties as a man and citizen upon the 
highest plane of intellectual action. His profound concern in 
everything tending to improve the condition of the people con- 
tributed to give him great weight and influence. It was his habit 
to attend the State convention, and his opinions and judgment 
were measurably a controlling influence in the councils of the 
Democratic Party. A man of wide reading and of clear judg- 
ment, he excels in the variety and accuracy of his information, 
and while conservative, he has favored progress, especially on 
those industrial lines which have proved so highly beneficial to 
the people of the State. 

In April, 1894, Alajor Robbins was appointed as the Confed- 
erate Commissioner of the Gettysburg National Park, being asso- 
ciated with two other commissioners representing the Federal 
Army, and since that time, while his place of residence has re- 
mained unchanged, most of his time has been passed at Gettys- 
burg. In the performance of the interesting work which has 
been committed to him in connection with that great battlefield, 
he has given entire satisfaction not only to the Confederates, but 



WILLIAM McKENDREE ROBBINS 435 

to the Federal authorities as well, and he has deported himself 
so as to have won the entire respectj confidence and esteem of 
those concerned with him in the discharge of his duties, while 
as a representative of the Confederate element he has borne him- 
self with honor and has reflected credit on his Southern friends. 

Major Robbins for over fifty years was a zealous member of 
the Methodist Episcopal Church, but when the Nashville agent 
obtained an appropriation from Congress for war losses, by means 
and under circumstances that Major Robbins could not approve, 
he withdrew from that denomination, and joined the Presbyterian 
Church. In his opinion, the book which has been most helpful to 
him in life has been the Bible, and he seeks to hold fast to the 
old teachings about Revelation and Christianity, and he does 
not accept the new doctrine of Evolution, and has no faith in 
the theological and so-called scientific speculations, which he 
deems the basis of the modern isms that find lodgment in the 
minds of the. thoughtless, seeking only for food for agitation. 

He attributes his success in life to the sacred influences of his 
boyhood home, where the evening and morning family prayer 
was never omitted by his Christian father and sainted mother, and 
he regards that whatever of usefulness has been vouchsafed to 
him had its origin in that source. Especially was he impressed, 
and helped all through life, by the maxim which often fell from 
the lips of his grandmother : "Be industrious and tell the truth," 
and that, he would suggest, might be of service to young people 
entering upon the struggles of life. 

Major Robbins has been twice married; and his four living 
children — three daughters and one son — are all happily wedded, 
highly esteemed, and doing well in the world. 

On the 3d day of May, 1905, after a brief illness, he was sum- 
moned by the final messenger to that higher abode, mourned by 
the entire State. 

.S". A. Ashe. 




HUGH REID SCOTT 




[UGH R. SCOTT, attorney-at-law and banker 
of Reidsville, North Carolina, on being re- 
quested to furnish material for his sketch, and 
to designate some one to prepare his biography, 
kindly put the information into a running 
narrative, which the editor thinks cannot be 
improved on, so it is given as he wrote it : 

"Having been informed by the Advisory Board of this History 
that I have been selected as one whose name is fit to adorn 
its pages, certainly I am flattered by the announcement; for to 
be mentioned among those who have helped to 'fashion and im- 
prove mankind' in a great State like North Carolina, and to seem 
to merit the mention, is a compliment worthy of the best ; but 
if I do not misconceive the exalted character of the work con- 
templated, and the excellence of its purpose, I am constrained 
to doubt the propriety of encumbering the pages of your history 
with the mention of men no more worthy of remark than myself. 
"On my next birthday I shall pass the fiftieth mile-post of my 
life's journey, and, pausing a moment amid the din and bustle of 
the busy world, I find myself on my native heath, where the 
ancestors of both sides of my family have lived and toiled and 
died, my head crowned with the frosts of cares as well as of 
years, without enmity toward the world, communing daily in 
business with the men of a large community, who are my friends 








v^^ 



HUGH REID SCOTT 437 

in business; and yet I am absolutely without a friend intimate 
enough socially to be expected to relish the request to prepare 
my sketch for publication. For I may as well confess that 
throughout life I have found the least possible pleasure in associa- 
tion with my fellow-men, and have tolerated it only so far and so 
often as has been necessary by reason of business relations — not 
that I dislike people, not that I have been entirely without confi- 
dence in men, not that I consider them inferior to myself; but 
somehow, when business affairs have been ended, I have found 
most pleasure in retirement, in seclusion, 'far from the madding 
world's ignoble strife,' lavishing whatever esteem I may have had 
upon dogs, horses — delighted most to linger among the 'sweetly 
blooming, gay, green birk' and 'the rich hawthorn's blossom' of 
the wildwood. I no doubt could name upon less than half my 
fingers of one hand the really intimate friends I have had during 
my entire life. Therefore, as I know no man who would consider 
the writing of the sketch desired a labor of love, I have deter- 
mined to jot these memoranda myself. 

"In 1877, just after receiving my license from the Supreme 
Court in North Carolina to practice law, I presumed to write to 
my late preceptor, stating that I contemplated going to some of 
the new States or Territories to locate, and asking him for a word 
of introduction, as I would be among^people wholly strangers to 
me. He answered me at once that the mere fact that a young man 
had spent two years at his law school gave him no right to expect 
the letter I asked for. I was deeply humiliated and mortified, 
as well as astonished. I did not go West, but the episode was 
not without profit to me, for I made up my mind to steer clear 
of dependence upon others as far as possible; and as much as 
could be without aid, except such as is vouchsafed by Heaven to 
those who help themselves, to tote my own skillet. Largely to this 
letter from this distinguished man I attribute the exclusion and 
seclusion which have characterized my life in a social way, and 
the consequent absence at this important crisis of any 'generous 
friend or pitying foe' to dress me up for the march of this pro- 
cession down the corridors of time. 



438 NORTH CAROLINA 

"I was born in this (Rockingham) county, in its southwestern 
portion, on January 9, 1855, the fourth of a family of six children. 
My father was William Scott, a native of this county, who was 
born and reared four miles west of Reidsville, near the old Speed- 
well Church of Revolutionary fame. He came of sturdy stock — 
what the French call bourgeoisie. My mother's maiden name was 
Rhoda Reid, one of the children of Reuben and Elizabeth Reid. 
Her birthplace and home was a house, still standing, in what is 
now the town of Reidsville, which town received its name from 
the fact that her father resided there and owned the lands upon 
which the town is now situated years gone by before it was even 
a village or had a name. Her ancestors were people of more than 
average refinement, celebrated for their personal pride, industry, 
integrity and native intelligence. She was a sister of David S. 
Reid, whose career was a distinguished one, having held the office 
of governor of North Carolina, United States senator, a member 
of the Great Peace Congress and other positions of honor and 
trust, all of which were filled with marked ability and unquestioned 
integrity. His home all his life was in Rockingham County. 
Another brother of my mother was Hugh K. Reid, who died a 
few years ago, at an advanced age, at Reidsville, a man of con- 
siderable wealth, justly esteemed for his integrity, benevolence 
and business sagacity. My grandfather, Reuben Reid, was a son 
of Hugh Reid, who came to this county some time after the 
Revolution from Pennsylvania. 

"My mother's mother before she married Reuben Reid was 
Elizabeth Settle, a native of this county, one of a family of 
children remarkable for their distinctive graces, both of mind and 
body. In the same household was a brother, Thomas Settle, long 
a distinguished judge of the Superior Court of North Carolina, 
who was the father of Judge Thomas Settle of the United States 
Circuit Court, a man generally conceded to have been without a 
superior and with few equals in the State so far as pertained to 
his distinguished personal address, his brilliancy of intellect and 
his personal magnetism and charm as an orator; and the last- 
named Thomas Settle was the father of Congressman Thomas 



HUGH REID SCOTT 439 

Settle of our day. Of the same family with my grandmother 
Reid was a sister Mary, who became the wife of Robert Martin 
of this county, the mother of Martha Martin (who intermarried 
with the celebrated Stephen A. Douglas of Illinois, the climax 
of whose distinguished career was his candidacy for President 
in i860 against Abraham Lincoln), and who was the mother of 
Judge Robert M. Douglas of Greensboro. 

"All these branches of my family and ancestry have resided 
here in Rockingham County. I am, therefore, strictly to the 
manor born. 

"Rockingham County, let me say here, has furnished to her 
State and country, from among her sturdy, conservative, unosten- 
tatious families, many men of merit in every vocation of life — at 
the bar, on the bench, in the pulpit and in commercial life. Even 
before the recent election of Governor Glenn, she received the 
sobriquet of 'The Nursery of governors,' and he makes the fifth 
she has contributed ; and no doubt all that kept another of her 
distinguished sons from being elected to the same high office was 
the cause advocated by his antagonist when in the great cam- 
paign of 1876 Judge Settle was defeated as candidate for governor 
against the peerless Vance. But I am digressing. 

"My father was personally attractive, bright, mirthful and ener- 
getic, especially cautious in his business affairs and particularly 
affectionate to his children. He died in 1884 at the age of seventy- 
one. My mother, who still lives, in full retention of her health 
and mental faculties at the age of eighty-three years, has lived a 
life of devotion to her children, in prayer to God for His guidance 
in their lives, a boundless 'faith that floweth like a river, making 
life's desert places bloom and smile ;' noted always for her piety, 
her charity, her integrity, her devotion to justice and right and 
her lofty aspirations for her children. In the modest home of 
this father and mother, on a farm in New Bethel Township, my 
boyhood was spent. In our household the Bible was regularly 
read by the children, if for no other reason, certainly as a duty. 
The Sabbath was strictly observed. All coarseness in the associa- 
tions of home was avoided. A few interesting and instructive 



440 NORTH CAROLINA 

books were at our command. We were required to work, and 
yet we had time for recreation, and were encouraged to participate 
in innocent amusements. Next to hanging around my mother, my 
own chief pleasure was found in the deep wildwood. To me there 
has always been 'a pleasure in the pathless wood, a rapture on the 
lonely shore,' even of a spring branch. I cared little for traffic. I 
seldom sought companionship of other boys. I read a good deal, 
partial always to biography and poetry. In 1871, after a careful 
preparation under the tutorage of Professor F. P. Hobgood, who 
then conducted a flourishing academy at Reidsville, I went to 
Wake Forest College. No youth has ever been more thoroughly 
impressed with the importance of an education, and few, I dare 
say, had ever entered college with a more determined purpose to 
make good use of the time and opportunities afforded, because I 
recognized the fact that it was as important to my sisters that 
they should be educated by my father as it was to me that I should 
be educated, and that it would be a severe tax to him, even though 
he had recuperated some from the disasters of the war, to educate 
us all. Besides my class duties at college, I gave special attention to 
the work of my literary society. I graduated in 1875, having won 
the degree of Master of Arts in four years, a thing until then 
never before done, I believe, in less than six years at that insti- 
tution. I achieved one of the two honors of my class, and had the 
gratification of having been promoted by my literary society to 
the position of debater in my sophomore year, a place usually 
given a junior or a senior, and winning the position of anniversary 
orator in my junior year, a distinction almost invariably con- 
ferred upon a senior. After the completion of my college course 
I spent the next two years at the law school of Chief Justice 
Pearson on the Yadkin, and obtained license to practice law in 
June, 1877, the last class examined by him in the Supreme Court. 
"At last my school days were over. I had for eight years lived 
in an atmosphere of books and libraries. I had in the beginning 
little predisposition for the world, and during these formative 
years of my life I sought no companionship with men, but only 
with books ; and really I had become a dreamer. No young man, 



HUGH REID SCOTT 441 

I venture to say, ever stood on the threshold of practical life with 
as many and as strong misgivings as I had. I do not know how 
it is with other young men at this period, but with me the ordeal 
was painful indeed. I had not been accustomed to the rebuffs 
of a heartless world. In childhood my playmates had been my 
sisters; my confidential friend, my gentle mother. At school I 
had found or took no time for games or amusements; the walls 
of my room I adorned or defaced with such mottoes as 'Diem 
Perdidi,' 'Dum Loquimur, tempus fugit,' etc. I literally burned the 
midnight oil. I often felt the need of rest, but I knew not how in 
peace to take it with the tasks before me, the unlearned things 
still ahead of me. I had learned to live among my books — my 
school-books first, and then for recreation, not rest, among biogra- 
phies, essays, romances and poems. And now suddenly, without 
having ever heard a drum beat for battle in practical life, I was 
thrust to the front with orders to go forward and to see that my 
banner did not stagger or trail. I shall never forget the feeling. 
To me the world seemed so cold and unsympathetic, so indiffer- 
ent and cruel. How I longed to abandon the fight before it 
begun, and, with my head upon my mother's bosom, 'weep my 
sad bosom empty.' I felt, somehow, that I had neither the sense 
nor the capacity to face the world and fight for a living, and 
horrors ! I had the impression that the world knew this. But the 
time had come when dreaming imist end, and the stern realities 
of life be met face to face ; the fight must be made even if it ended 
in a fall. Burdened with misgivings like these, and with a Bible, 
the gift of a favorite sister, and from my mother a parting, tearful 
blessing and injunction, 'God bless you, my boy; don't forget 
to pray,' and from my father the laconic admonition, the only 
one he ever gave me, to be careful about liquor and women, I 
dried my tears, caught my breath, set my teeth and stepped into 
the line to fight the battle of life with the world's toiling millions. 
"I located at Wentworth in September, 1877. Of course I 
got little to do for several years. This was painfully discouraging 
then, because my father gave me nothing after I obtained my 
license ; but it was best for me. Whenever I got a case, no matter 



442 NORTH CAROLINA 

how trivial, I undertook to inform myself thoroughly upon the 
law involved and to diagnose the facts intelligently and practically. 
Then I had ample time for general reading, and I sought to dili- 
gently use it in that way. 

'"In 1878 I was elected solicitor of the Inferior Court of Rock- 
ingham County, and in 1880 the people of my senatorial district 
were kind enough to nominate and elect me on the Democratic 
ticket as senator to the legislature of 1881, and likewise, in 1882, 
to the Senate of 1883. I was flattered at this manifestation of 
confidence, though I then had no predisposition to politics; but 
it gave me an opportunity to meet the people of my district, among 
whom I had made up my mind to live. But I was never happy 
moving among a miscellaneous throng, and at the salary paid I 
found no profit in the position. Indeed, the whole thing was most 
unsatisfactory to me. In my doings there is a sort of directness 
and candor which I cannot well avoid ; indeed, some people some- 
times think it abruptness. And I found it wholly distasteful to me, 
and have ever since then not hesitated to push aside every tempta- 
tion and decline every invitation, however flattering, to enter the 
political arena. Now I congratulate myself on the resolution 
formed and so strictly adhered to. 

"I continued to reside at Went worth, closely applying myself 
to my profession, until December, 1884, when I moved to Reids- 
ville, in the same county, where I have ever since continued to 
reside. In January, 1885, with a few friends, it was decided to 
establish a new bank in the town. I at once drew the charter, 
and upon its adoption b}' the legislature then in session, the 
Citizens' Bank of Reidsville was organized and at once begun 
business. I was elected its president, and have ever since held 
the position, a class of business most congenial to my taste. With 
the assistance of carefully selected and efficient employees, the 
success of the bank has been phenomenal. Its affairs are con- 
ducted in the most methodic business manner. Its administration 
has always been conservative and prudent. Its losses have been 
nominal, its profits flattering and its career a subject of just pride. 
The duties incident to the conduct of the bank have been in addi- 



HUGH REID SCOTT 443 

tion to the duties of the practice of the law with me, and in no 
way in abandonment of my profession. Indeed, I conceive they 
have mutually helped each other. 

"In the beginning, my purpose was to cultivate the accomplish- 
ments of an advocate, and for a while I did so diligently, and, 
friends were generous enough to say, with considerable success. 
But I was ambitious to make money, and I found while fame 
came to the successful advocate, the money came mostly to the 
patient, attentive, methodic business lawyer, competent to aid men 
in their business afifairs, in the formation and construction of 
contracts, correct settlement of estates, negotiations of trade, etc. 
And I have tried to direct my course accordingly ; and I am by no 
means dissatisfied with the results. My business as a lawyer and 
banker has, of course, thrown me in contact with a large percent- 
age of the citizenship of my town and surrounding country, and 
has identified me in one way or another with very many of the 
enterprises that have been built up here. It will be readily under- 
stood that under the circumstances, to make some personal 
enemies, especially among the narrow-minded, has been unavoid- 
able ; but I trust that upon the whole the community has profited 
by my presence. 

"In my own afifairs, and in my advice, and in the conduct of the 
business of others, I have sought to keep aloof from the speculative 
element, and have avoided being led by prospect of flattering 
profits into hazardous ventures. Safety first, and as far as con- 
sistent with safety, profits, has been my business motto. In the 
conduct of trials I have never gone out of the way to attack any 
man, but when the facts justified it, and seemed to make it neces- 
sary to do so in the establishment of my client's rights, to fail 
to make the attack with vigor for fear I might hurt somebody's 
feelings or incur somebody's ill-will would, I consider, brand me 
as a disgrace to my profession and unworthy to retain my license 
to practice law. 

"Prudence and caution I deem among my highest virtues, and 
I have tried to cultivate and consult both. My purpose in busi- 
ness matters is as far as possible to examine and investigate before 



444 NORTH CAROLINA 

embarking, and alwaj's to prefer safe investments with small 
profits rather than uncertain ones with doubtful, flattering results. 
This rule has enabled me to make some profit in almost all invest- 
ments, and has protected from loss. 

"I suppose I must be a thorough Anglo-Saxon, because I am 
always inclined to the acquisition of lands. I own considerable 
real estate, both in town and in the country, and while attended 
with lots of petty vexations, these possessions aflford me real 
pleasure and recreation. I love to build houses, arrange yards, 
fence fields, cut ditches, plant orchards, raise cattle and hogs, sow 
and cultivate and reap, walk and ride over open fields and woods 
and plan their reclamation and development. I own a large place 
just a few miles from town, upon which is an old mill and a large 
old country residence. I find much pleasure and recreation here 
in fishing, hunting, etc. 

"I surround myself in a modest way with such personal com- 
forts as I desire; and I certainly do not like to be imposed upon. 
I have thought the philosophy good which teaches to avoid a 
conflict as long as possible, but, being involved in one, to so con- 
duct yourself that your adversary will ever after avoid you. 
Indeed, I consider that man who is not willing to stake his prop- 
erty and, in fact, his liberty rather than to submit to wrong and 
imposition forfeits his right to both in the economy of God's 
creation. 

"I realize that in not marrying I have made a mistake — that is, 
I mean, if I had been happily married years ago, it would have 
been better for me, and I would now be more comfortable. But 
I have always been apprehensive that 'temperamental incompati- 
bility' or something else might make the condition intolerable and 
life burdensome, and so have always been lacking in the courage 
needed to take the risk. 

"In my reading, which has been largely of books and little of 
newspapers, I have always been fond of poetry, Milton, Byron, 
Shakespeare and Burns being my favorites, but have largely 
directed my reading to prose, essays such as Emerson's and 
Macaulay's, biographies of such men as Walter Scott, S. S. 



HUGH REID SCOTT 445 

Prentiss, William Wirt and Samuel Johnson, and the better class 
of fiction, such as 'Ten Thousand a Year,' 'Les Miserables,' etc. 
A book I would especially recommend to the young is 'Todd's 
Students' Manual.' I found it quite interesting and helpful in my 
youth. I have one of the best law libraries in the State, no doubt, 
and a literary library quite as choice. It has long been a fad with 
me to gather up all material I could pertaining to North Carolina — 
anything written about her and her people, or by any of her sons 
or daughters. I have quite an interesting collection of books, 
magazines and newspaper material of this character, which I col- 
lect and preserve, not that I ever expect to utilize it for the purpose 
myself, but somehow I have thought that in years to come some 
historian of our State might find it of value. 

"I have in a general way, as fancy prompted, responded to the 
demands of charity and benevolence, the good of some of which 
promises to live after me ; others seem to have been wasted, little 
less than misappropriated. 

"My strongest incentive to accomplish anything in the world 
has been to gratify my parents, to keep from getting behind the 
other fellow in the march along the highway, and for the glorious 
privilege of being independent. These may not have been the 
most exalted principles of action, but they candidly have been the 
most active principles with me. While he lived, my greatest 
delight in being able to score progress in the world was the 
pleasure afforded my father ; and to-day I have no higher ambition 
and no sweeter pleasure than the delight I know it brings my 
mother for her to believe that I am in good health and have 
thriven in a measure. She has been my sweetest comfort in life, 
and in the providence of God I hope will be spared to me for 
many years to come ; for whatever I have been, whatever I am, 
or whatever I may be, for good to myself or to others, I owe in a 
large measure to her. 

"If my life stands for anything, it is for comfortable accumula- 
tion acquired gradually by prudent, industrious, attentive, 
punctual application to business, without extravagance ; the deter- 
mination to avoid the feverish anxiety and disastrous results of 



446 



NORTH CAROLINA 



the morbid desire to 'get rich quick,' which is the secret of the 
dismal failure of many men, and the heartless motive power that 
has made tyrants of others; to assume no obligation lightly, to 
meet all obligations faithfully, to give due consideration to busi- 
ness investments before entering into contract, and to seek mod- 
erate profits on safe securities in preference to flattering gains on 
doubtful protection. 

"No man should pander to public caprice merely for the sake 
of moving with the rabble. Men of thought and position should 
lead and mold public sentiment, not be molded always by it, other- 
wise they become demagogues. Certainly either extreme is a 
fault, but my own inclination has been to give too little rather 
than too much heed to the opinion of others. 

"Hugh Reid Scott." 





'-m j::SX 01:^'^-^' 







y.y 








DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 

; AVID LOWRY SWAIN, who would have been 
known as a jurist and as a statesman were it 
not that his eminent services to the State as 
president of the University gave him a higher 
title to the remembrance of posterity, was born 
on the 4th day of January, 1801, near Asheville. 
He was the second son of George and Caroline Swain. His father 
was of English descent, and was born in Roxboro, Massachusetts, 
in 1763. When of age he came South and settled in what is now 
Oglethorpe County, in the State of Georgia, and soon became 
prominent in that community. He served in the legislature of 
that State five years, and was a member of the convention that 
revised the constitution of Georgia. His health failing, in 1795 
he removed to Buncombe County, being among the early settlers 
of that region. He married shortly afterward Caroline Lowry, 
the widow of Captain Lowry, who had fallen a victim in an Indian 
massacre, and a sister of Joel Lane of the city of Raleigh and of 
Jesse Lane, the father of General Joe Lane of Oregon, who was 
the Democratic candidate for Vice-President in i860. The fruits 
of this union were seven children, of whom the subject of this 
sketch was the second. By trade George Swain was a hatter, 
but combined farming with that business, excelling in both, for 
his hats were famous throughout all that region. He was a man 



448 NORTH CAROLINA 

of some learning and much intelligence, and struggled to secure 
a good education for his children. 

After being well taught at home, at the age of fifteen young 
David was placed at school at Newton Academy, near Asheville, 
where he was instructed by Rev. George Newton, a Presbyterian 
clergyman, along with B. F. Perry, afterward governor of South 
Carolina; Waddy Thompson, still more distinguished in public 
life; M. Patton, R. B. Vance, James Erwin and other classmates 
who attained prominence in their generation. He was a good 
scholar, and was so proficient that he was employed for some 
time in teaching Latin at that school. In 1821 he entered the 
junior class at the University, but for some reason remained at 
that institution only four months, when, designing to study law, 
he came to Raleigh and became a law student under Chief Justice 
Taylor, obtaining his license to practice in December, 1822. At 
Raleigh he seems to have met his fate, and on the 12th of Janu- 
ary, 1823, he married Miss Eleanor H. White of that city. Carry- 
ing his bride to his mountain home, he entered immediately upon 
a lucrative practice ; and two years later he began a distinguished 
public career as a member of the House of Commons from Bun- 
combe, in which position he was continued by his constituents 
until he was elected judge of the Superior Court of the Edenton 
district in 1830. He was a sagacious, thoughtful, enterprising 
man, ardent in his disposition and bold in conception, industrious 
and attentive to details, especially with regard to statistics and 
taxation, and he soon became an important member of the legis- 
lature. He was prominent in securing the passage of the bill for 
the construction of the French Broad Turnpike, which brought 
an immense stream of emigration, travel and trade through West- 
ern North Carolina, and otherwise he contributed to the material 
improvement of the State. 

In the Assembly of 1827 a bitter contest sprang up between 
two candidates for the position of solicitor in the Edenton district, 
and as the friends of neither would give way, they compromised 
by agreeing to elect Mr. Swain, although his residence was in the 
extreme western part of the State. He served, however, but one 



DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 449 

term, and then resigned, and in 1830 he was elected judge of the 
Superior Court over Judge Seawell, an eminent practitioner of the 
Raleigh bar. After two years' service on the bench, during which 
he gained much in the esteem and confidence and good will of the 
people, he was called to the higher office of chief executive, and 
was inaugurated as governor of the State on January i, 1833. No 
man had attained these high honors at such an early period of his 
life, and his career had been most successful, although he was not 
accounted the equal in intellect or in great powers of many of the 
distinguished characters who at that time adorned the annals of 
the State. 

Up to this time parties had not been well defined as organiza- 
tions, for, indeed, for twenty years there had been but one party, 
that known as the Republican ; but there were factions led by 
favorite statesmen, each of whom was aspiring to the Presidency. 
Henry Clay, who had long been the most prominent leader of 
that party, from his advocacy of internal improvements and what 
he called the American system of tariff protection, was at the head 
of a faction known as the National Republicans, and he was in 
violent opposition to Andrew Jackson, the President, who assumed 
such high prerogatives in removing the deposits from the bank 
that Clay stigmatized Jackson's followers as Tories, and likened 
his own position to that of the Whigs in England. These antag- 
onisms resulted in crystallizing two separate parties, and while 
Mr. Macon, Judge Ruffin, Senator Haywood, Judge Saunders, 
Mr. Edwards, Judge Seawell and others sustained the adminis- 
tration. Judge Gaston, Judge Mangum, Judge Badger, Governor 
Graham and others, among whom was Governor Swain, followed 
the lead of Henry Clay in regard to national issues. As violent 
as national antagonisms had become on Jackson's course in regard 
to South Carolina, in State matters there was, however, a still 
more exciting and interesting issue upon which the people divided. 
The west had long complained of the unequal operation of 
the constitution of the State, and urged a constitutional conven- 
tion to remedy the evils under which the people of that section 
suffered. The east had, however, always been able to defeat every 



450 NORTH CAROLINA 

proposition for calling a convention. At length, in Virginia, where 
the same sectional differences existed. Western Virginia in 1828 
secured a convention and obtained the desired constitutional 
changes ; and in 1834, by a single vote, a convention was called 
for North Carolina with limited powers. Feeling ran high. Gov- 
ernor Swain was a member of the body, as was indeed nearly 
every other important leader of the State. In the course of some 
remarks in the convention Governor Swain, as reported in the 
published debates, said : "But be assured, gentlemen, that if by 
any arrangement of larger counties in both sections of the State, 
or if, from any cause growing out of the peculiar principle upon 
which the convention is constituted, injustice shall be done to 
any large portion of the community, the struggles in which we 
are involved will not terminate with the existence of this body. The 
general sense of injury will impel the people as one man to rend 
asunder the cords which bind the body politic and stand forth here 
in unshorn might and majesty." As quoted by the venerable 
Mr. Creecy, Governor Swain said in a closing burst of passionate 
eloquence : "Unless our demands are granted, unless our wrongs 
are righted, we will rise like the strong man in his unshorn might 
and pull down the pillars of the political temple." And, indeed, 
there had been in previous years several movements threatening 
the separation of the western counties from the eastern part of 
the State. 

Happily, however, differences in the convention were composed 
and the issues were determined favorably to western sentiment, 
and the constitution was reformed to meet western views,, as far 
as the limited powers of the convention permitted. On the sub- 
mission of the amendments to the people, the east voted almost 
solidly against the adoption, while the west voted with equal zeal 
for the ratification of the proposed amendments, and carried the 
measure by a majority of 5000 votes. 

Governor Swain by re-election continued in the office of gov- 
ernor until January, 1836, when he was succeeded by Governor 
Spaight, the last governor elected by the legislature. During his 
administration as governor the foundations were laid of the new 



DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 45 1 

Capitol building to replace the one which had been destroyed by 
fire on the 2 1st of June, 1831. He had been a helpless spectator 
when that noble edifice, adorned by the statue of Washington, 
was destroyed, and it was his lot on the ■ 4th of July, 1833, to lay 
the cornerstone of the present edifice, which was considered at 
the time of its completion to be the most magnificent structure of 
the kind in the Union. 

On the 27th of January, 1835, Dr. Joseph Caldwell, the presi- 
dent of the University of North Carolina, died. He had been 
appointed professor of mathematics at the University in 1796, and 
ten years later became president of the institution, and remained 
in that position until his death. When a successor was to be 
elected, as Governor Swain's public employment was about to 
terminate, he suggested to Judge Nash that he would like to be 
made president of the University. Judge Cameron thought that 
he was the very man for the place, and at the meeting of the Board 
of Trustees Judge Cameron nominated him and secured his elec- 
tion ; and for more than a generation Governor Swain remained at 
the head of that institution. 

As a legislator he had been intelligent, progressive, efficient and 
active in promoting not merely the interests of his constituents, 
but of the State itself. As a lawyer he had been esteemed for his 
abilities, learning and capacity to master the details of the most 
intricate cases. Indeed, at the age of twenty-seven he was retained 
as counsel for the State along with Mr. Badger in a complicated 
mass of litigation, involving more land than was ever sued for 
under one title in our State, except alone the claim of Lord 
Granville's heirs ; and when the case was finally gained in the 
Supreme Court of the United States, where Mr. Webster was 
associate counsel, Judge Badger frankly acknowledged that the 
cause was won mainly by the careful preparation of Mr. Swain. 
As a judge he was admirable ; not only was he very popular and 
highly esteemed, but he was so accurate in his rulings that of the 
eighteen appeals that came up from him while on the bench, in 
only five did the Supreme Court reverse his decisions. As a 
governor he was patriotic, and his letter-book shows that his time 



452 NORTH CAROLINA 

and labors were principally devoted to the questions of constitu- 
tional reform, the coast defences in North Carolina, the claims of 
the State against the general government, the removal and settle- 
ment of the Cherokee Indians, the adjustment of land titles in the 
West and other matters of domestic concern. In 1830 he was an 
active member of the Board of Internal Improvements, and he 
was thoroughly aroused to the necessity of improved facilities for 
domestic intercourse, commerce and trade; and his administra- 
tion was signalized by the holding of a great Internal Improve- 
ment Convention, at which the policy of the State was laid down 
as requiring the construction of east and west lines of railroads 
as the North Carolina system. Later, when the North Carolina 
Railroad was incorporated, he was one of the foremost friends 
of that great work, and ofifered to be one of a number to take the 
whole stock at once and secure the building of the road. 

As interesting and useful as Governor Swain's public career 
had been, that on which he now entered as president of the Uni- 
versity was still more to the advantage of the State and a still more 
enduring basis of his fame. Although not distinguished for 
scholastic learning, and unfamiliar with the methods pursued at 
the great educational institutions of this country and abroad, yet 
in many particulars he was excellently fitted for the duties de- 
volving upon him. At that time the number of students at Chapel 
Hill was only 90, and the faculty was measurably weak and the 
institution unimportant. Under his direction and active manage- 
ment the student body yearly increased until at the outbreak of 
the war there were nearly 500 young men at the institution. 
And in equal measure the efficiency of the University in its 
various departments had been enlarged and strengthened. His 
influence was felt at every point. His religious affiliations were 
with the Presbyterian Church, but his Christian character was 
marked by a catholicity of feeling toward all good men of every 
denomination, and, as he expressed it, "I love all those who show 
that they are Christians." He was a praying man, and introduced 
the practice of opening the regular meetings of the faculty with 
prayer. The night before he died he said of the Lord's Prayer : 



DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 453 

"The oftener I use it, the more precious it is to me; it contains 
a whole body of divinity." 

A descendant of the Lanes of Wake, he was still further identi- 
fied with people of historic interest by having married Miss 
Eleanor H. White, daughter of William White, who had been 
secretary of State, and the granddaughter of Governor Caswell; 
and the union proved most fortunate and happy, for Governor 
Swain by his nature and his life of unsullied purity thoroughly 
appreciated the ties of home, and lived in the love of his wife and 
children ; and he was fond of entertaining his friends. 

He was an excellent financier, and amassed a handsome estate, 
which permitted him to indulge his taste for hospitality and kindly 
social intercourse. In conversation he was delightfully interesting 
and instructive, replete with anecdote, genial humor, historical 
incidents and literary quotations. Particularly was he enabled 
by the aid of a remarkable memory to trace the genealogy of the 
students under him. He knew of them at their homes, and he 
sought to stand in the attitude of a father to them. His policy 
was to forbear with the hot blood of youth and seek to develop 
the better nature of erring students, and many a one could in 
after years remember a turning point in his career when he was 
won by the kindness of President Swain to paths of honor, 
acknowledging the great debt he owed to the wise head of the 
retired politician, who, having managed men in his younger days, 
was so adept in managing boys in his maturer years. 

At the University, while his prudence and cautious policy were 
marked, his constructive ability was of great benefit to the insti- 
tution. He was eminently a progressive man. He loved to sug- 
gest and see his suggestions carried into operation. Under his 
management many improvements were inaugurated at the Uni- 
versity — the excellent system of street draining in the village, the 
planting of elms, the improvement and ornamentation of the 
grounds; while within doors he founded the State Historical 
Society and established and largely assisted in supporting the 
University magazine. He first introduced the study of the Bible 
in college, and himself taught constitutional and international 



454 NORTH CAROLINA 

law, moral science and political economy. A student all his life, 
with great capacity, he became an adept in his department, and 
had no superior as an instructor in the branches that he taught. 
The University had had a struggling existence until he became 
its president, and then it went forward on a glorious career of 
usefulness. 

During the war between the States, Governor Swain devoted 
his best efforts to keeping the college alive, for such was the 
impetuosity with which the call to arms was obeyed that of the 
80 members of which the freshman class consisted in i860, only 
one remained to pursue his studies, and he continued at the 
University because his health was too delicate for him to go into 
the army. Of the senior class, all enlisted as soldiers, and fully 
one-fourth of them fell in battle. Seven members of the faculty 
volunteered, and of them five returned no more. At the time of 
Lee's surrender there were about a dozen students at the Uni- 
versity. But even while the University and village were occupied 
by 4000 Michigan cavalry, the old bell was rung daily, prayers 
were held and the University was kept going. 

Chief among the characteristics of Governor Swain was his 
fondness for historical research. Raised in the mountains, and 
penetrated with a great love for the State, connected with families 
of renown, he took a deep interest in whatever reflected honor on 
the people or adorned the annals of the commonwealth. During 
his long career he was without doubt the foremost citizen of the 
State in rescuing from oblivion historical incidents that had 
escaped publicity. His collection of manuscripts was large and 
important, and he sought to inspire others with the same spirit 
by which he himself was animated. He contributed many papers 
of historical interest to the "University Magazine" and to other 
publications, and he delivered several addresses of rare value. He 
aided Caruthers, Wiley, Colonel Wheeler and other writers of 
history; and at his instance the legislature appropriated $5000 
for the collection and publication of historical records, to be ex- 
pended under the direction of Dr. Hawks and himself, which 
enabled Dr. Hawks to make the compilation embraced in his 



DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 455 

invaluable history of North Carolina. And although the prepa- 
ration of that interesting work was by the hand of Dr. Hawks, 
yet before the publication the manuscript was read by Governor 
Swain, and it bears his imprimatur. 

Moreover, even in the retired shades of Chapel Hill Governor 
Swain exerted an influence on public affairs. Not only was he 
felt through the hundreds of young men who constantly emerged 
from the University into active life, but the annual gatherings 
of the representative men of the State at the University com- 
mencements were always occasions for the dissemination of ideas 
and the discussion of new measures. And Governor Swain had 
the habit of freely expressing himself on matters of public concern, 
and exercised a beneficial influence in promoting measures calcu- 
lated to advance the progress of the State. 

In particular, at the memorable session of the legislature of 
1848, it is narrated that Miss Dix, when urging the erection of 
the insane asylum, entered the hall of the House of Commons 
leaning on Governor Swain's arm, and he was a leading figure 
when that great effort was made to rescue the State from the 
slough of despond and start her on a new career of progressive 
prosperity. That he exercised a large influence in securing the 
passage of the bill incorporating the North Carolina Railroad 
cannot be doubted ; and so, from administration to administration, 
he exerted an influence highly beneficial to the best interests of 
North Carolina. 

His relations with Governor Vance, who, like himself, was a 
native of Buncombe and was a student at the University under 
Governor Swain, were especially cordial, and Governor Vance 
conferred with him freely during his administration as governor 
of the State. At the end of the war, when General Sherman was 
approaching Raleigh, Governor Vance appointed him and Gov- 
ernor Graham and Dr. Edward Warren as intermediaries, and 
sent them on an embassy to meet the Federal commander and 
obtain what terms were possible for the surrender of the capital 
of the State, Governor Swain being particularly solicitous that the 
University should not be destroyed. Their mission was sub- 



456 NORTH CAROLINA 

stantially successful, and but little devastation was committed by 
Federal marauders after their visit to General Sherman. 

President Johnson was by birth a North Carolinian, and desir- 
ing the early restoration of North Carolina to the Union, immedi- 
ately on Johnston's surrender invited Governor Swain, along with 
Hon. B. F. Moore of Raleigh and William Eaton of Warren to 
consult with him in regard "to the reconstruction of the Union." 
These gentlemen, conformably with the President's request, 
reached Washington on the 20th of May, 1865, and two days 
later had a conference with the President at the White House, at 
which the President mentioned that he proposed to issue an 
amnesty proclamation and to appoint a military governor of the 
State, who would call a State convention that could restore the 
State to the Union. Governor Swain, Mr. Moore and Mr. Eaton 
all objected to that course, and on the 25th of May a second con- 
ference was held, there being present in addition W. W. Holden, 
R. P. Dick, Richard Mason, J. P. H. Russ, Rev. Mr. Skinner, 
Dr. Robert J. Powell and Colonel Jones. On the President 
insisting on the plan he had proposed. Governor Swain and his 
two associates urged that the then speakers of the Assembly should 
be allowed to call the legislature together, and that the legislature 
should call a convention of the people. As this would have been 
a recognition of the Confederate legislature and authorities, the 
President would not assent to that proposition, and, insisting on 
his course, requested the gentlemen present to nominate some one 
for military governor, saying that he would appoint whomever 
they would suggest. Not being able to approve of that step, 
Governor Swain, Mr. Moore and Mr. Eaton withdrew, and the 
other North Carolinians present held a meeting, and, at the 
instance of Mr. Russ, nominated Mr. Holden for governor, and 
the President made the appointment. 

On the same day that Governor Swain reached Washington, 
Governor Vance, who had been arrested in North Carolina, was 
brought to Washington and incarcerated in the Carroll Prison, 
and Governor Swain and his friend, Colonel Wheeler, the his- 
torian, with whom he was staying, went out to see Governor 



DAVID LOWRY SWAIN 457 

Vance. Governor Swain's course in these matters was manly and 
patriotic, and President Johnson manifested his high regard for 
him by appointing him a member of the Board of Visitors of the 
MiHtary Academy at West Point, then about to inspect that insti- 
tution, and in June, 1865, Governor Swain performed that func- 
tion; and upon his return to Washington he again sought per- 
mission to visit Governor Vance, who was still incarcerated in 
the Carroll Prison. 

Governor Swain resumed his connection with the State Uni- 
versity, but in the summer of 1868 the State passed under the new 
constitution, and the University fell into the hands of new trustees, 
whose first action was to request the resignation of the president 
and faculty; and a guard of negroes was sent to take possession, 
and the halls were then closed. 

On the nth of August, while driving in the neighborhood of 
Chapel Hill, Governor Swain was thrown from his buggy and 
brought home painfully injured, and on the morning of the 27th of 
August, 1868, he suddenly fainted and expired without pain. 

Hon. Weldon N. Edwards has written: "I have heard many 
of the friends of Governor Swain state that he became melancholy 
and began to droop away on the termination of his duties as 
president of the University, and they believed a broken heart was 
as much the real cause of his death as the fall from his carriage. 
He felt the last link was broken that united his heart and hopes to 
all earthly objects. The whole manner of the man was changed. 
His step was tottering and slow; his massive frame was bowed 
down in grief. His countenance, so wonted to be lifted up in 
smiles and playful wit, had already settled into the stern reality 
of the impending gloom and of perpetual silence." 

Governor Swain had several children, but all died unmarried, 
except a daughter, who married General S. D. Atkins of Freeport, 
Illinois ; and there is no representative of the name surviving. 

5". A. Ashe. 




CHARLES ELISHA TAYLOR 




CR. CHARLES E. TAYLOR, president of 
Wake Forest College, was born in Richmond, 
Virginia, on the 28th of October, 1842. 
Through both father and mother he is de- 
scended from distinguished ancestors. His 
father. Rev. J. B. Taylor, D.D., was born in 
England in the early part of the nineteenth century. While he 
was yet an infant his parents came to America and settfed among 
the hospitable people of the Old Dominion. Converted when 
young, he was licensed to preach at twenty years of age, being 
called to fill important pulpits in Richmond and Baltimore from 
the beginning of his ministry. 

His most important and far-reaching work, however, was done 
not in the active pastorate, for the duties of which he possessed 
peculiar gifts, but in the secretaryship of the Foreign Mission 
Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. This responsible 
position he filled for twenty-seven years, covering the stormful 
period of the Civil War, and showed in the performance of its 
delicate and difficult duties ability and tact of the highest order 
coupled with a spirit of unselfish consecration. 

On his mother's side. Dr. Taylor's ancestors were no less dis- 
tinguished. His mother, nee Miss Mary Williams, was the 
daughter of Rev. Elisha Williams of Beverly, Massachusetts, 
who, after active service as an officer in the Revolution, became 




(S,^.$^.:^c^^ 



CHARLES ELISHA TAYLOR 459 

a Congregational minister. One of her ancestors, Dr. Elisha 
Williams, was president of Yale College from 1725 to 1739, and 
raised in England the first funds for Princeton. She was an ideal 
helpmeet for her distinguished husband — tactful, patient, earnest, 
unselfish, consecrated, devoted to the high tasks of the preacher's 
wife. 

From these parents Dr. Taylor inherited strong, manly and 
at the same time deeply spiritual traits of character. The beauti- 
fully blended influence of both his parents vividly impressed upon 
him in early childhood was a controlling force in molding his 
character in his young manhood and in shaping his strikingly 
successful career. 

As a boy he delighted in all kinds of outdoor games and sports^ 
but not to the neglect of books. These were his constant com- 
panions. The reading habit formed in boyhood has lingered 
with him ever since as a potent factor in shaping his character 
and career. He reads with great rapidity, but never at the expense 
of accuracy, and when he has finished a book he is master of its 
contents. 

When a boy, he spent his summers on his grandfather's farm 
in the country, where, in the performance of light tasks under 
wise supervision, he acquired a thorough knowledge of agri- 
cultural subjects. Few men in professional life are more familiar 
with the laws and forms of plant life or more enamored of the 
charm of the woods. 

Grown to young manhood, he was prepared for Richmond Col- 
lege in one of the excellent academies in the Old Dominion's 
capital city, and entered that institution in the autumn of 1858, 
intending to graduate in 1862. But not so. Like many another 
brave Southern youth, he was not permitted to finish his college 
course without interruption. In April, 1861, on the very day of 
the passage of Ordinance of Secession by the Virginia convention, 
he left college and joined Company F of the First Virginia Regi- 
ment. After spending several months in helping to drill new 
recruits in camp near Richmond and at Acquia Creek, he was 
assigned to the Twenty-first Virginia Regiment, and ordered, in 



46o NORTH CAROLINA 

July, 1 86 1, under command of General R. E. Lee, to share the 
toils and perils of a most trying campaign in West Virginia. In 
December of the same year his brigade was sent to join the 
command of Stonewall Jackson in the lower valley. Under this 
great leader he engaged in several expeditions of far-reaching 
consequences, and bore a brave soldier's part in some of the most 
important battles of the war. At the battle of Kernstown, 
March 23, 1862, he received a very painful wound, from some 
of the effects of which he still suffers. After several weeks spent 
at home under expert surgical care, he was transferred to the 
Signal and Secret Service Corps with the cavalry of General 
J. E. B. Stuart. In 1863 he was made acting adjutant of the 
Signal and Secret Service Bureau in Richmond, in which respon- 
sible position he remained until the close of the war. 

In the development and administration of this important branch 
of the service he was a very efficient agent, being one of three 
officers chosen on one occasion to decipher a difficult message for 
President Jefferson Davis. 

Dr. Taylor closes a recently written, interesting magazine 
article on the signal and secret service of the Confederate States 
thus: 

"The signal and secret service of the Confederate States and its work 
are now only memories. But out of the experience gained by the signal 
men of both armies has arisen a beneficent, peaceful institution. Signal 
men now receive their despatches from the winds and the clouds. Their 
flags are signs of coming meteorological changes. Torches have given 
place to barometers, and the world-wide cipher codes are now in the 
daily use of commercial interests. 

"Here also 

"Peace hath her victories no less renowned than war." 

At the close of the war our young soldier, like his immortal 
leader, Lee, turned from the storm of battle to the quiet but fruit- 
ful tasks of the teacher, and opened a school in Hanover County, 
Virginia. With the reopening of the University of Virginia in 
the autumn of 1865, he entered this honored institution, taking 
the entire academic course and graduating with the class of 1870. 



CHARLES ELISHA TAYLOR 461 

His friends at the University included many men who have since 
achieved distinguished careers, among them being Senator J. W. 
Daniel, the talented orator and statesman, who has so ably repre- 
sented the Old Dominion for several terms in the United States 
Senate; the brilliant orator and author, John S. Wise; the suc- 
cessful and resourceful Southern Railway president, Samuel 
Spencer, and Hon. J. Taylor EUyson, several times mayor of 
Richmond. 

Following his graduation, he spent several months in Europe, 
visiting England, France, Italy and other countries of interest to 
American scholars, and on his return assumed the duties of 
the professorship of Latin in Wake Forest College, to which he 
had been elected. Here began the real constructive work of his 
life. He was an ideal college professor. Courteous, affable, easy 
of approach, but withal dignified and preserving at all times a 
cautious self-reserve, he won and retained the esteem and respect 
of every student who entered his classes. Painstaking accuracy 
and thoroughness he required of students in the class-room, and 
futile indeed was every attempt to elude his vigilance or to pass 
surface pretence for substantial attainment. He used Gilder- 
sleeve's Grammar, and was so careful in enforcing conformity to 
its rules that the terra "Aorist," a word frequently found in this 
grammar, was lovingly applied to him in student parlance, and 
still lingers in the memory of those who were fortunate enough 
to enjoy his instruction. His favorite author was Juvenal, always 
read in his senior class, and right well did he blend in his inim- 
itable method a thorough knowledge of the principles of syntax 
with a sympathetic appreciation of the moral excellence and charm 
of the great Roman satirist. 

Soon after coming to Wake Forest he decided to preach, and 
we find the following record in the diary of his distinguished 
father : 

"April 22, 1871. On my way to Wake Forest College to assist in the 
ordination of my youngest son, Charles E. Taylor. April 23d. A large 
congregation assembled. Brother Wingate preached an excellent sermon. 
Subject, 'The Successful Preacher.' A solemn time." 



462 NORTH CAROLINA 

Dr. Taylor's preaching is characterized by clearness, simplicity, 
earnestness and a deeply spiritual tone. His treatment of a theme 
is both suggestive and exhaustive. 

On the nth of September, 1873, ^r. Taylor married Miss Mary 
Hinton Prichard, the accomplished daughter of Dr. John L. 
Prichard, the great Baptist divine. Of this happy marriage seven 
children have been born, six daughters and one son, Charles E. 
Taylor, Jr., a prosperous banker in Wilmington, North Carolina. 
Two of the daughters have married professors in Wake Forest 
College — Dr. J. Hendren Gorrell of the modern languages depart- 
ment and the late lamented Professor C. C. Crittenden of the 
chair of pedagogy. A third daughter has recently married Mr. 
W. D. Duke, the popular and talented general manager of the 
Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad. 

Dr. Taylor's home life is peculiarly beautiful. At perfect ease 
before great assemblages as a speaker, the central figure in any 
group of cultured people in conversation, he is always at his best 
in the charmed circle of his own household, where, freed from all 
restraint, he discloses the treasures of a well-stored mind and a 
gentle and refined spirit. 

His greatest work, and the one that will live longest, has 
been wrought in the administration of the affairs of Wake Forest 
College. He was elected president of this institution in Decem- 
ber, 1883. 

Wake Forest had already done a great work in North Carolina, 
training for lives of honor and usefulness many men whose influ- 
ence and reputation transcended the bounds of their native State. 
Founded as a manual training school in 1835 by Dr. Samuel Waitt, 
a man of rare executive ability, it passed through a great variety 
of experiences, growing stronger all the while, and probably 
reached its period of greatest usefulness and influence under the 
administration of Dr. W. M. Wingate, a great preacher and a 
man of the deepest spiritual insight. Dr. Wingate was succeeded 
by the great preacher. Dr. T. H. Prichard, who soon found the 
duties of the presidency uncongenial, and returned to his first 
love, the pulpit. A short interval followed, during which the 



CHARLES ELISHA TAYLOR 463 

afifairs of the college were well administered by Dr. W. B. Royall, 
as chairman of the faculty. Meanwhile, Professor Taylor, as 
secretary of the Board of Education, and as special agent in an 
effort to raise endowment, had been canvassing the State. His 
success was so marked that the trustees, at a special meeting in 
Raleigh in December, 1883, elected him to preside over the insti- 
tution, to which he had rendered such noble service for thirteen 
years. He found a college with seven faithful professors, three 
substantial brick buildings, a loyal body of alumni, about $100,000 
of endowment and a student enrollment of 150 — the Wake Forest 
of 1883. It is not the Wake Forest of 1905. The college of 
to-day, with its 328 students, with live buildings in use and two 
others in process of erection, with seventeen professors giving 
instruction in fourteen schools, with its well-equipped laboratories 
and library — all supported by endowment funds valued at more 
than $300,000. This college of to-day, it is not too much to say, 
is largely the product of the constructive genius of President 
Taylor. 

He is a man of large outlook, building for the future. To him 
culture is simply a means to an end to be realized in lofty, sym- 
metrical. Christlike character. To him the student is not a thinly 
veiled culprit to be watched and hedged about with rules and 
penalties, but an embryo man to be restrained, helped and de- 
veloped. He is a man of boundless tact and patience, never losing 
faith in the possibilities of college boys, and ever resourceful in 
bringing these possibilities into fulfilment. 

He has received three honorary degrees — Doctor of Divinity, 
from Richmond College; Bachelor of Literature, from the Uni- 
versity of North Carolina, and Doctor of Laws, recently con- 
ferred by Mercer University, Georgia. 

His best known and most popular work in the field of author- 
ship is the "Story of Gates, the Missionary," a charming biographi- 
cal sketch of the great North Carolina missionary, who spent his 
life in China. He has now in process of preparation a treatise 
on Ethics, which will be issued in the near future. His style is 
simple, pleasing, clear, holding the attention, convincing the judg- 



464 



NORTH CAROLINA 



ment and impressing the reason. Earnestness of purpose is the 
keynote of all his thinking, writing, speaking and acting. 

Such is a brief and inadequate sketch of Dr. Charles Elisha 
Taylor, the brave soldier, the profound scholar, the earnest 
preacher, the lucid writer, the wise and progressive college presi- 
dent ; above all, the faithful, consecrated Christian. 

/. B. Carlyle. 





O- i^'If/'a-i^ 3,Br^ AO-' 






DANIEL A. TOMPKINS 

'N the evolution of the industrial South no man 
has ever been more useful than Daniel A. 
Tompkins of Charlotte. Time and circum- 
stances presented the opportunity, and Mr. 
Tompkins, having the ability, and being well 
prepared, seized it, and pressed the work of 
industrial development with great force, and with substantial 
results. He is by birth a representative Southern man ; one of his 
early ancestors, Stephen Tompkins, having located in Virginia 
as far back as 1750, and while not seeking prominence in political 
careers, many of his kin were professional men of great merit, 
and were successful in their vocations. His father was Dr. 
De Witt Clinton Tompkins of Edgefield County, South Carolina, 
whose bright, cheerful disposition and genial temperament and 
agreeable manners attracted to him all who came within the 
sphere of his influence, while his learning and skill, and his intel- 
lectual qualities and character made him an ornament of his 
profession. 

As usual with the country practitioner, he united with the pro- 
fession the business of a planter, reaping the fruits of his intelli- 
gent direction and methodical habits. 

Dr. Tompkins married Hannah Virginia Smyly, and on the 
I2th day of October, 1852, their son, the subject of this sketch, 
was born at their home near Meeting Street Post-ofHce, nine 



466 NORTH CAROLINA 

miles north of Edgefield, South Carolina, where he was raised 
beneath the eye of his mother, whose influence upon him was 
strong in developing his moral characteristics, as well as that 
intellectuality which has since so distinguished him. His early 
bent was for mechanics and construction ; and on the plantation 
there was some play for the exercise of his faculties in those 
directions. There were no tasks set for him on the plantation, 
but never idle, he was often engaged in farm work and farm 
duties, but more about the smith and wood-working shops than in 
the fields. At first he was sent to the neighboring country schools, 
and then to a higher school at Edgefield village. He then entered 
the College of South Carolina at Columbia, where he graduated. 
His bent all through life had been for mechanics, and he chose 
to follow the natural inclination of his disposition, and became 
a student at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute at Troy, New 
York, where he graduated as engineer in 1873. However, he felt 
that his training was not yet complete, and he served an ap- 
prenticeship at the machinists' trade in the manufacturing estab- 
lishment of John A. Griswold & Company at Troy. He then 
worked as a draftsman with A. L. Holley at New York, and later 
as a journeyman machinist and draftsman at the Bethlehem Iron 
Works of Pennsylvania. In 1880 he became master mechanic of 
the Crystal Plate Glass Works in Missouri, and doubled the 
capacity of that plant while he was there. 

In 1882 he made an engagement with the Westinghouse people, 
which took him South, and out of that engagement developed his 
business in engineering and contracting on his own account. 

Familiarity with the theoretical learning of his business was now 
united to a mastery of the practical details, and coming home, he 
entered upon a career that has been no less successful in its 
pecuniary reward than creditable to his intellectual force and 
business aptitude. 

The Piedmont section of the South Atlantic slope had during 
a decade, from 1874 to 1884, enjoyed a period of great prosperity, 
and the people had emerged from the slough of despond and from 
the misfortunes of the previous years, and an enterprising spirit 



DANIEL A. TOMPKINS 467 

was beginning to manifest itself. The ground was ready, the 
season propitious, and Mr. Tompkins threw himself into the work 
of establishing new industries with great vigor, and with an 
intellectual force that secured a fine harvest. He was practically 
the original founder of the engineering and contracting business in 
Charlotte, which to-day gives that city a distinctive character as a 
center for engineering, machinery and factory construction, and 
further than this, many of the leading firms in these lines emanated 
from this parent school, as it were, either as co-worker or em- 
ployee of Mr. Tompkins, while many others are scattered over 
different States following similar pursuits. 

A man possessed of strong reasoning faculties, zealous, even 
enthusiastic, in the advocacy of his views, but cold and dispassion- 
ate in considering the facts and figures that enter into any subject, 
his opinion soon became esteemed, and his judgment carried great 
weight. But few men in the South were so well equipped by 
education and still fewer by natural gifts for the important work 
he had undertaken, and he rapidly rose to prominence in his pro- 
fession, and was regarded as a potent factor in developing the 
quickened industrial life of the Southern States. In this field of 
usefulness Mr. Tompkins has had few compeers of equal merit, 
for few, if any, have been so instrumental in developing the re- 
sources of the South and in opening up new occupations and 
employments for the people. He has assigned as a leading cause 
for the fact that the South was agricultural and that many of the 
whites of the South Atlantic States sought the fertile farms at 
the West, the tendencies and operations of the institution of 
slavery, and he thinks that when the result of his life work is 
summed up it will be found that his best usefulness has been not 
merely in promoting the development of the material resources of 
his section, but in aiding the Southern people to recover from 
mental attitudes made by the institution of slavery, and bringing 
back to the South the occupations which were driven out by that 
institution. As auxiliary to this, he has sought to be useful in 
helping to reconstruct the educational system so that it will fit 
the new conditions of the Southern States. 



468 NORTH CAROLINA 

He thinks that the institution of slavery broke down the manu- 
facturing and commercial interests of the South, and drove out 
the free white labor. To remedy that, he has urged the estab- 
lishment of various kinds of manufacturing, and especially has he 
done a great deal in developing the cotton-seed oil industry in 
the South, and has built many cotton-seed oil mills, possibly as 
many as two hundred. He has built more than one hundred cotton 
mills, a number of sulphuric acid chambers and fertilizer works, 
many electric-light plants, many improved ginneries, and has done 
a vast amount of other engineering work. He has founded and 
developed a machine shop for the construction of cotton oil and 
cotton machinery and for doing other machine work, and he has 
built textile school buildings, and has assisted in the organization 
of textile schools for North Carolina, South Carolina and 
Mississippi. 

In the matter of education for industrial pursuits he is strong 
in the conviction that every youth ought to serve an apprentice- 
ship at some trade for two or three years, at some time between 
the ages of fourteen and eighteen. He thinks it is easy to perceive 
that the boy brought up on a farm finds education more valuable 
and advantageous than the city boy who has done no work. In 
the education of the young he would substitute an apprenticeship 
to give the same benefits that the farm training gives. He con- 
siders the usual work on a farm as being as good an apprentice- 
ship as any other. The boy in the city would naturally have to 
take an apprenticeship in a machine shop or pattern shop or 
foundry or in some other standard manufacturing pursuit. Two 
or three years in a cotton mill would be as good an apprentice- 
ship as any other. He thinks this apprenticeship should be taken 
before any college education, and after the common school 
education. 

Mr. Tompkins has always had a strong altruistic interest in the 
development of the natural resources of the South and of the 
country at large, and in particular has he been attentive to the 
needs of that section of the country of which he is a resident. 
He has for some years devoted much time to the A. and M. Col- 



DANIEL A. TOMPKINS 469 

lege at Raleigh, of which he is a director, and the establishment 
of the Textile Department at that institution has been almost 
wholly due to his efforts and influence. 

The subject of this sketch has made two distinctive initiative 
movements, which have been of great value in the development 
of the industrial resources of the South. The first of these was 
the putting of the cotton-seed oil business on an engineering basis, 
and for a long time building most of the cotton-seed oil mills which 
were built in the South. The present development is on lines of 
engineering which he introduced and which has become standard 
throughout the South. 

The second most important initiative movement was the estab- 
lishment of works in the South for the construction of cotton 
mill machinery. 

He is president of the Manufacturers' Club at Charlotte, which 
organization he largely promoted ; and a member of the Engineers' 
Club at New York; and because of his prominence, he was ap- 
pointed by the President a member of the Industrial Commission, 
and served as such for about two years and a half. He is presi- 
dent of the D. A. Tompkins Company, of the Atherton Cotton 
Mills, of the High Shoals Cotton Mills and of the Edgefield Manu- 
facturing Company. 

In connection with the work which has enlisted Mr. Tompkins's 
most thorough interest, he has delivered addresses and written 
many articles of great value ; and he has published several books 
that are standard and are highly valued by those interested in 
their subjects. Among them are noted "American Commerce : Its 
Expansion," "Cotton Mill : Processes and Calculations," "Cotton 
Mill Commercial Features," "Cotton and Cotton Oil," "Cotton 
Values in Textile Fabrics." And he has also published a "History 
of Mecklenburg County." 

A mind so active has naturally addressed itself to all the im- 
portant subjects that have a bearing on the industrial life of the 
people ; and Mr. Tompkins has reached his conclusions on political 
questions because of considerations that appeal to his intelligence, 
without regard to the views of others. 



/ / 



470 NORTH CAROLINA 

Always identified with the Democratic Party, he has differed 
with the leaders of that party as to the desirability of Free Trade, 
believing that it is to the best interest of the South, as well as of 
the entire Union, to preserve the protective system. Indeed, he 
regards that the South, with its nascent industrial development, is 
more interested in the protection of manufactures than Northern 
States can be, and he advocates that policy as a matter of local 
patriotism. And in like manner he is a firm supporter of all 
measures tending to advance and promote manufacturing at the 
South ; and for the advantage of the country, he urges the desir- 
ability of an education comprising equally practical training with 
scholastic and technical knowledge, or an apprenticeship along 
with a high school or college education. 

The high position that Mr. Tompkins has attained among influ- 
ential men is illustrated by his selection as a director of the 
Equitable Life Insurance Company. In 1905 the affairs of that 
company, which is the greatest insurance company in the world, 
became involved through maladministration, and the effect threat- 
ened a loss of public confidence in the administration of all the 
great corporations. Under these serious circumstances, several 
new directors were appointed to straighten the affairs of the 
Equitable and to re-establish public confidence. The selection of 
these directors was left with Ex-President Cleveland, and among 
them he chose Mr. Tompkins. No higher public testimony could 
be given of the esteem in which he is held. 

5". A. Ashe. 






WILLIAM TRYON 

^OWEVER much opinions may differ as to the 
personal character and disposition, it is gen- 
erally conceded that William Tryon was the 
ablest of all the royal governors of North Caro- 
lina. Governor Tryon was a native of England, 
born at Norbury Park, in the county of Surrey, 
in 1729. He was the son of Charles Tryon of Bulwick, North- 
amptonshire, and a grandson of Robert Shirley, first Earl of 
Ferrers. Governor Tryon was a soldier by profession. He first 
came to North Carolina as lieutenant governor under the aged 
Governor Dobbs, and arrived at Brunswick, on the Cape Fear, 
October 10, 1764. While lieutenant governor he drew up a plan 
for improving the postal system, and was making a personal tour 
of inspection through the province when news came that Governor 
Dobbs had died on March 28, 1765. Tryon took the oath of 
office as governor pro tempore at Wilmington on the 3d of April, 
1765. He was regularly sworn in as governor at Wilmington 
on December 20, 1765. Tryon's first serious trouble with the 
colonists was in 1766, when the enforcement of the Stamp Act 
at the town of Brunswick met with forcible resistance. During 
these troubles, Tryon, by a series of prorogations, prevented the 
Assembly of the province from meeting, and so prevented dele- 
gates from being sent by the Assembly to represent North Caro- 
lina in the "Stamp Act Congress" at New York on October 7, 



472 NORTH CAROLINA 

1765. The Cherokee boundary was run during Tryon's adminis- 
tration, and by his order, in the spring of 1767. 

When Tryon came to North Carolina he lived in the house 
formerly occupied by Governor Dobbs at Brunswick, there being 
no fixed capital. One of the subjects of controversy had been in 
regard to the location of the capital, the king claiming it as his 
prerogative to locate the capital, which the Assembly would not 
assent to. But when the Stamp Act was repealed, a wave of 
intense loyalty swept the people off their feet, and as a manifesta- 
tion of their love and affection they prayed the king to locate 
the capital at New-Bern, and made a large appropriation for 
building the Government House, and entrusted the money to 
Governor Tryon himself. The mansion he erected, known as the 
Tryon Palace, was said to be the finest house in America. This 
building was begun on August 26, 1767, and it was finished in 
1770, the official records being moved into it in January, 1771. 
The governor lived there in almost regal style, and it was also the 
home of his successor, Governor Josiah Martin. After the Revo- 
lution, on February 27, 1798, it was accidentally burned. From 
1766 until 1771 immeasurable trouble was caused in North Caro- 
lina by a local insurrection composed of men calling themselves 
Regulators. While no one can question the fact that these men had 
some valid grievances, very few have attempted to justify their 
lawless riots, indulgence in personal violence and attacks on the 
courts of the province. Early in 1771, when the Regulation 
movement was extending even to the seashore, and the whole 
fabric of government was threatened with overthrow, Governor 
Tryon organized a military force to restore order. The Regu- 
lators about Salisbury agreed on a peaceful settlement with their 
local officials by arbitration, and the whole movement might have 
been arrested by similar means in other counties, but Governor 
Tryon declared that an unconstitutional way of settling the 
trouble, and calling out the militia, he met the Regulators and 
routed them at the battle of Alamance on May 16, 1771. One of 
those who had been outlawed, being captured, was executed next 
day, and at a special session of the Superior Court held at 



WILLIAM TRYON 473 

Hillsboro others were tried and convicted. Twelve of these were 
sentenced to death and six were hanged, the governor commuting 
the sentence of the others, who were eventually pardoned. 

While Governor Tryon was in North Carolina, he used his 
strongest efforts to advance the educational interests of the colony, 
and quite a number of schools were established. The attempt to 
obtain a charter for Queen's College at Charlotte failed through 
no fault of his. He was also the friend of all religious denomina- 
tions, and even his enemies concede that he was the most tolerant 
of all the colonial governors. It was while he was returning 
from the Alamance campaign that Tryon received notice that he 
had been appointed governor of New York. Thereupon he left 
directions for disbanding the army, and pushed ahead of his troops 
to New-Bern. There on July i, 1771, he turned over the govern- 
ment to James Hasell, president of the Council, who acted as 
governor until the arrival of Tryon's successor. Governor Josiah 
Martin. Tryon reached New York on July 7, 1771 ; and on the 
9th was sworn in as governor of that colony. It is not within 
the scope of the present work to treat of his career as governor 
of New York, nor of his military record in the Revolution as a 
major-general of Loyalists, when (as Grady said of Sherman) 
he "was a little too careless with fire." 

Governor Tryon returned to England in 1780, and afterward 
rose to the rank of lieutenant-general in the army. He died on 
the 27th of January, 1788, and was interred in the burial ground 
of St. Mary's Church at Twickenham. Governor Tryon, when 
a young man, married Miss Margaret Wake, and several children 
were born to this marriage, but no descendants are now living. 
The county of Wake was named for Mrs. Tryon. There was 
also a county in North Carolina named for the governor, but 
this was expunged from the map, and Tryon County, New York, 
shared the same fate. 

Marshall De Lancey Haywood. 





GEORGE WASHINGTON WATTS 

pORGE WASHINGTON WATTS, who has 
long been one of the foremost men of Durham, 
was born in the town of Cumberland, State of 
Maryland, on August i8, 1851. He is the son 
of Gerard S. Watts and his wife, Annie E. 
Watts, of Baltimore. He received his prepara- 
tory education in the public schools of that city, and having been 
well prepared for college at a private school, in 1868 he entered 
the University of Virginia, graduating in 1871. 

In boyhood his physical condition was somewhat delicate, while 
his earnest nature led to studious habits and a rapid intellectual 
development. At the University he took the engineering course, 
which accorded well with his talents, and brought into play his 
creative faculties as well as his reasoning powers, and familiarized 
him early in life with the relative value of causes in producing 
effects, and tended to give him confidence in his opinions, which 
has been a distinguishing feature in his subsequent business 
career. 

His father at that time was a wholesale dealer in tobaccos at 
Baltimore, and upon his return from college he became a salesman 
for his father's firm, G. S. Watts & Company. 

Earnest, intelligent, active and of untiring industry, Mr. Watts 
applied himself to mastering every detail of the tobacco trade, and 
for seven vears remained with his father, to their mutual benefit 




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GEORGE WASHINGTON WATTS 475 

and advantage. Chief among the characteristics of his father was a 
downright honesty, not merely in money matters, but in every 
affair that entered into his life. He was impulsive, easily stirred, 
quick in thought and in action; high-tempered, but just and 
punctilious with respect to every responsibility and obligation. In 
particular was he scrupulous in regard to the performance of his 
moral and religious duties, and so estimable as to enjoy the un- 
bounded confidence and esteem of all his friends. Daily associa- 
tion with such a parent ripened the character of Mr. Watts, and 
under its training he became a practiced business man, in whom 
were combined the most admirable qualities. He was led to soften 
his own demeanor without abating a scintilla of his natural firm- 
ness, and he gained strength by practicing self-possession, while 
he learned to abhor duplicity and to admire frankness, openness 
and honesty in purpose and action. In the course of their busi- 
ness the firm dealt largely in smoking tobacco manufactured in 
Durham, and became somewhat familiar with the affairs of the 
several firms engaged in manufacturing at that place, and with 
the relative merits of their products. Mr. G. S. Watts, with his 
large experience, felt assured that the goods made by W. Duke & 
Son were very superior, and could be pushed with a certainty of 
success. Understanding that their operations were restricted 
because they had only a limited capital, he determined to seek a 
connection with them and put some money into their business, 
if they should be willing to sell an interest. He at once went to 
Durham and made a proposition to the Dukes to buy an interest 
for his son, offering to pay cash for it. His proposition was 
accepted, and Mr. G. W. Watts became the owner of one-fifth 
of the property and business of W. Duke & Sons, and, moving 
to Durham, he entered at once on his new duties as an active mem- 
ber of that firm. The cash paid in by Mr. Watts, although but a 
few thousand .dollars, gave new life to the business, while his 
assistance in managing the financial affairs of the firm was of 
inestimable advantage, and the operations were largely expanded. 
By 1885 the business had grown to such an extent that it became 
desirable to incorporate a company to conduct it, the corporate 



476 NORTH CAROLINA 

name being W. Duke, Sons & Company. Mr. Watts, whose 
efficiency as a financial manager and aptitude for that department 
of the work had brought most gratifying results, was chosen 
secretary and treasurer of the new company. Under his capable 
management the business continued to grow by leaps and bounds, 
and while much of its phenomenal success was due to the skill 
and experience of Mr. Duke and of his sons, who were men of 
fine abilities as manufacturers, yet in large measure the great 
burden of the financial administration fell on the shoulders of 
Mr. Watts, and under the joint and persistent efforts of the several 
members of the company the small plant of 1878 continued to 
expand beyond their most sanguine expectations; and, with tre- 
mendous strides, it passed from its original territory and estab- 
lished a foothold in every State of the Union, and then extended 
into every civilized country that had commercial dealings with the 
United States. 

And not only was the business great in its development, but it 
has brought with it great wealth. There has been no parallel to 
it in the history of North Carolina, and but few within the United 
States. The magnitude of its operations, its tremendous struc- 
tures, the vast capital it employs and the large number of families 
it supports invest it with a national importance, and that it has 
been measurably the work of North Carolinians, and remains 
largely under their direction, is a matter that appeals to the State 
pride of large numbers of North Carolinians. With the great 
wealth arising from the tobacco business, Mr. Watts, as well as 
the various other members of the original firm of W. Duke & Sons, 
has engaged in other enterprises of large importance. Having 
made Durham his home, he has been active in promoting many 
industries that have in large measure contributed to the growth 
and prosperity of that town, and he has sought to obtain for it 
needed commercial facilities. In 1884 the Commonwealth Club 
was organized to advance these interests, and Mr. Watts became 
president of it, and during his administration there were built the 
Lynchburg and Durham Railroad, the Oxford and Clarksville 
and the Durham and Northern, thus making Durham quite a 



GEORGE WASHINGTON WATTS 477 

railroad center and giving her easy access to the marts of trade. 
During the same period waterworks and an electric-light plant , 
were established, adding to the comfort and convenience of the 
citizens. Of these and many other enterprises that tended to 
the advantage of the town Mr. Watts was either the originator 
or the active coadjutor, and he has zealously co-operated in accom- 
plishing all the improvements that have marked the progress of 
the place. His latest work in this respect is the erection of the 
splendid ofifice building on Main Street, known as the Loan and 
Trust Building, which is complete in every appointment, and 
would be an ornament to any city of the Union. 

In devising and developing industrial interests, Mr. Watts has 
ever been a constant and important factor in the prosperity of the 
town. He is interested in many of its factories, being president 
of the Pearl Cotton Mills, vice-president of the Erwin Mills and 
of the Golden Belt Manufacturing Company, and he is interested 
in the Durham Cotton Manufacturing Company. He is also inter- 
ested in the Mayo Cotton Mills at Mayodan, in the Cooleemee 
Cotton Mills, in the Kerr Bag Manufacturing Company, Durham 
Loan and Trust Company, and many other such enterprises. He 
is likewise a stockholder of and director in the Fidelity Bank, in 
the Farmers' and Commercial Bank at Raleigh and International 
Trust Company of Baltimore, and president of the Home Savings 
Bank, Durham. 

Of many of these companies he is a director, and he has been 
a director in the Seaboard Air Line Railway Company, and in 
the other railroads with which he is connected. Probably no other 
man in the State has such large and varied interests in North 
Carolina or has contributed more than Mr. Watts has done to 
promote the industrial welfare of the State and advance its pros- 
perity. But notwithstanding the claims which this great mass 
of business makes on his time and attention, he has continued 
as the managing director of the American Tobacco Company, 
which was formed in 1890 by a consolidation of the corporation of 
W. Duke, Sons & Company with most of the other leading tobacco 
concerns in the United States, by which the small Durham firm 



478 NORTH CAROLINA 

has become one of the greatest bttsiness concerns known to modern 
times. 

Not ostentatious in his deeds of charity, Mr. Watts is liberal 
in works of benevolence. He erected the Watts Hospital, which 
cost, with endowment, $50,000. He presented it to the city of 
Durham, his object being to provide an institution where afflicted 
persons can be treated with the best medical skill and attended 
by trained nurses free of charge ; and he has made large contribu- 
tions for the support of the Orphan Asylum at Barium, which is 
imder Presbyterian direction. He likewise has contributed lib- 
erally toward equipping and sustaining Elizabeth College for 
young ladies at Charlotte, and he has made handsome donations 
to the Union Theological Seminary, of which, indeed, he has been 
the greatest benefactor. The president of the seminary, in speak- 
ing of Mr. Watts's donation, said: "It was his unprecedented 
liberality that made possible the removal of the seminary from 
its former isolated and disadvantageous location to its present 
admirable site in the suburbs of Richmond, where it has experi- 
enced a large increase of attendance and an improvement in 
facilities so great that it has now an equipment second to that of 
no other institution of its class. The main building of the sem- 
inary was erected through the munificence of Mr. Watts, and, by 
action of the Board of Directors, is to bear his name through 
all the future." 

Of. Mr. Watts's home in Durham it may be said that it is one 
of the handsomest private residences in the State, in which taste 
and elegance are combined with rare discrimination and judgment. 
Despite his pressing business, Mr. Watts takes his holidays, and 
is particularly fond of playing golf, a game in which he excels. 

He is a zealous member of the Presbyterian Church, of which 
he has long been an elder ; and his consistent walk in life has gained 
him the respect and regard of a large circle of friends. 

Mr. Watts was elected superintendent of the Sunday-school of 
the First Presbyterian Church of Durham, North Carolina, in 
1885, and has held the position uninterruptedly to the present date; 
he has ever been faithful and prompt in the discharge of the duties 



GEORGE WASHINGTON WATTS 479 

incident to this position, and enjoys not only tiie respect, but tlie 
affection of the school; he is enthusiastic in Sunday-school work, 
resourceful and progressive, a close Bible student, tactful apd 
cheerful. 

Mr. Watts has been for many years an attendant upon Sunday- 
school conventions, and a close observer of methods and Sunday- 
school literature ; he is, therefore, well equipped with ideas helpful 
to the work, and does not hesitate to introduce new and pro- 
gressive methods for the advancement of teachers and pupils. 

To say that he has done a good work during the past nineteen 
years does not express the proper estimate of his efforts, but 
to say that he has accomplished an immeasurable amount of good 
will possibly suffice to indicate that he is held in high regard by 
all the members of his Sunday-school and church and very many 
outsiders who have experienced his helpfulness in deed and 
counsel. 

He is a Democrat in his political affiliations, but voted against 
that party in 1896 and 1900 on the financial issue, being opposed 
to its policy with regard to free silver. 

On the 19th of October, 1875, Mr. Watts was happily united in 
marriage to Miss Laura Valinda Beall, and they have one child, 
who is now the wife of Mr. John Sprunt Hill of Durham. 

5". A. Ashe. 




CORNELL UNIVERSITY 
OEPT. OF PRES & CONSERVATION 

Treated by /rt /•■' Date I '/fC- 
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